Ebony Elizabeth Thomas studies how people of color are portrayed (or not portrayed) in children’s and young adult literature and how those portrayals shape our culture. She regularly reviews children’s books featuring diverse heroes and heroines, teens and tweens caught between cultures, and kids from the margins for the Los Angeles Times. She has a particular interest in young adult fantasy literature and fan culture. A former English and language arts teacher, Thomas also explores how teachers handle traumatic historical events, such as slavery, when teaching literature. Thomas’ research and critical work have been published in the Journal of Teacher Education, Research in the Teaching of English, Qualitative Inquiry, Linguistics and Education, English Journal, The ALAN Review, and Sankofa: A Journal of African Children’s and Young Adult Literature. Her work has also appeared in Diversity in Youth Literature: Opening Doors Through Reading (ALA Editions, 2012), her co-edited volume Reading African American Experiences in the Obama Era: Theory, Advocacy, Activism (Peter Lang, 2012), and A Narrative Compass: Stories That Guide Women’s Lives (University of Illinois Press, 2009). Dr. Thomas is a former National Council of Teachers of English Cultivating New Voices Among Scholars of Color Fellow (2008–2010 Cohort), serves on the NCTE Standing Committee on Research (2012–2015), and was elected by her colleagues to serve on the NCTE Conference on English Education's Executive Committee (2013–2017).
A New Hope: Ebony Elizabeth Thomas’s Vision for “The Dark Fantastic”
“The Dark Fantastic” poses an essential question about the absence of PoC voices: what happens to our imaginations when those voices are sacrificed?...