Grandparents' cultural and gender roles in multicultural picture books
AuthorJernigan, Gisela Evelyn
KeywordsEducation, Language and Literature.
Education, Bilingual and Multicultural.
Sociology, Ethnic and Racial Studies.
AdvisorShort, Kathy G.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractMy dissertation is a qualitative study using content analysis to explore the roles of grandparents in multicultural picture books. I developed 14 Cultural Markers to analyze my first research question concerning how grandparents from a variety of cultures fulfilled their roles as Family and Cultural Historians, Cultural Role Models, and Experts on Traditions. I identified one Cultural-Sharing Symbol per book to answer my research question regarding how Cultural Markers and Cultural-Sharing Symbols related to these grandparent roles. My third research question explored how Cultural-Sharing Symbols related to character growth in the grandparent/protagonists. My fourth research question considered how gender differences might have influenced grandparents from a variety of cultures as they fulfilled the studied roles. I developed seven Gender Continuum Markers to investigate possible differences in how the eight studied grandmothers fulfilled the three grandparent roles, compared to the eight studied grandfathers. My fifth research question considered how Gender Continuum Markers might relate to possible gender differences in the grandparent/grandchild relationship. To answer the five questions I selected 16 picture books featuring a grandfather and grandmother from the following cultures: African American, Mainstream, East Asian American, Asian American, European American, Latino, Jewish American and Native American. To organize and analyze my findings, I developed a technique related to intertextuality called cumulative story analysis. I found that both European American grandparents, both Native American grandparents, and the Jewish American grandfather fulfilled all three roles almost equally, using most possible Cultural Markers. Both Mainstream grandparents were portrayed with significantly fewer tradition Cultural Markers than the other grandparents. All grandchildren/protagonists grew by the books' ends. Continuity was the most prevalent, powerful Cultural Marker. Most grandparents were portrayed with Gender Continuum Markers that might be considered closer to the traditionally feminine side of the continuum for non-verbal interactions. There was even less verbal variation between genders; talk was usually portrayed with blended Gender Continuum Markers. There were definitely more gender similarities than differences when the books were compared both across cultures and within cultures. The bond of grandparent love existed beyond gender limitations.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Language, Reading and Culture