This week my younger daughter is at a camp where she is getting to do a wide variety of arts and crafts project with the theme – Party in the USA. They are fully involved in celebrating this great country that we live in. So far, her favorite day has been where they focused on the Statue of Liberty. In addition to painting a picture, they created her crown and torch.
Back in April, I wrote about a few books that we had found about the Statue of Liberty after visiting her during our spring break. Now there is a new book coming out this September that takes a very interesting look at Lady Liberty, specifically, her right foot.
In Dave Eggers’ new book, Her Right Foot, readers get the usual history of the great statue – how she was designed and built, why she is green, and what the symbolic significance is behind aspects of her design. But then about half-way through the book, Eggers draws the reader’s attention to a little discussed part of the statue – her feet.
Readers are encouraged to look at the fact that she is not in fact standing still, but that her right foot is partially raised to show that “she is on the move!” Then by showcasing a diverse variety of characters, we are encouraged to think about what that means. I will fully admit that I never noticed that her foot is raised, even when I was there this past March. According to the London Telegraph, her foot is raised “depicting her moving forward away from oppression and slavery.” Eggers takes that concept and says that “Liberty and freedom from oppression are not things that you get or grand by standing around like some kind of statue.”
As we move into the season of celebrating our country and as we continue to stand up and fight so that America continues to be a land of the free and welcoming to immigrants, this book has an important message of solidarity and hope. Lady Liberty was a gift from the French. She carries a torch to symbolize enlightenment and a to help people find their way to liberty and freedom, the cornerstones of America. It is our job as Americans to continue to make sure that this is what America stands for. To throw off the shackles of oppression and to celebrate the things that bring us together as one nation.
Her Left Foot offers a great opportunity to talk about symbols and how to stand up for things that we believe in. While this book isn’t available until September, it is definitely one to put on your list of great books about the Statue of Liberty.
*** I received a digital advanced reader’s copy of this book from Edelweiss. All opinions are completely my own.
Every Wednesday I try to post a non-fiction picture book as part of the Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge hosted by Kid Lit Frenzy. These days, that seems like the only day I manage to post! There are truly so many amazing nonfiction picture books being published these days, it can be hard to contain myself sometimes. Make sure to check out Kid Lit Frenzy and the linked blogs to find some more fabulous books!