by Yehudit Kafri

No Brainwashing

If I were writing about this now for children, I would first of all tell the truth, but avoid heightening it too sensationally the way the media does for adults. I would try to raise the point of view of the other, the one who attacks us and kills us, to clarify a little, to myself and the young reader, what could motivate someone who attacks us to do these terrible deeds. To check if our side was not, God forbid, committing similar acts. In short, I would not be satisfied with one narrative in which there are only the good (us) and the bad (them.) I would emphasize universal values that apply to all people. I would write with imagination and playfully, and never as brainwashing.

Yehudit Kafri, born on Kibbutz Ein HaHoresh in 1935, has written 15 books, eight of them poetry, and has worked as a translator and book editor.

How Books Tell the World’s Bad News to Children

The articles in this special section:

Beware Sentimental Tripe

by Jane Yolen

Truth Soothes

by Susan Rich

Heroines Overcome their Demons

by Gail Carson Levine

Bad News from the Start

by Ellen Handler Spitz

Kaddish as Magical Incantation

by Susie Morgenstern

Cry for Someone Else

by Esther Rudomin Hautzig

History Helps

by Karen B.Winnick

Struggles of Underdogs

by Sonya Sones

No Brainwashing

by Yehudit Kafri

Hope After the Holocaust

by Ruth Minsky Sender

Pain Is a Teacher

by Julius Lester

Forget Bibliotherapy

by Johanna Hurwitz

War in a Picture Book?

by Fran Manushkin

Discovering Hatred

by Leslea Newman

Between Hopes and Reality

by Etgar Keret

The Power of Anger

by Rabbi Sandy Eisenberg Sasso