Susan writes:

Among the many discussions on CN
focused on hair products, styling etc, there have been just as many on
self-image. We discuss the effects (both positive and negative) that
images in movies, music and magazines have had on how we see ourselves. Rarely
have I seen articles on how books have shaped our thinking. And
until today I had not given this much thought either. That is, until I
saw a post by blogger Kate Hart on the “Color Distribution of Young Adult(YA) Book Covers”.
The lack of diversity in beauty magazines is
often talked about. But it turns out that the publishing industry, at
least the YA segment, is also plagued by similar issues. According to
the
analysis by Kate, 90% of the characters on YA book covers are white,
while 10% featured character of ambiguous race or ethnicity. Minorities
comprised just 3%; broken down as follows: Latina-1.4%, Asian-1.4% and
Black-1.2%.

Of-course we are often told not to judge a book by its cover because
what is in the pages is more important. There is also the argument that
the cover is simply an advertisement
,
that diversity-in whichever form-can be omitted on the cover but
revealed in the story. Authors such as Sharon Fluke call for the inclusion of a more
diverse set of protagonists, while some advocate for excluding cover
models altogether in favor of graphic covers. Others still, are trying
to break new ground such as Miss Gee whose Kickstarter campaign aims to
raise money to publish coloring books featuring curly haired characters of  darker hues. Childhood and the teenage years are a formative stage. 

How did diversity or lack thereof in the books you read growing up
influence how you see yourself and the world today?