STOCKHOLM, Sweden — H.R.H. Crown Princess Victoria and Minster of Culture and Democracy Alice Bah Kuhnke were on hand to present the 2018 ALMA Award recipient Jacqueline Woodson with the world’s largest award for children’s and young adult literature.
“Just like Astrid Lindgren, you stand firm,” said Minster of Culture and Democracy Alice Bah Kuhnke. “You don’t abandon your readers – you stay by their side. Not by answering their questions, but by showing them – through your stories – how different life can be. And that it’s ok. Your message is: “You exist. Your thoughts and feelings are real – and that’s ok.”
The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA) award amounts to SEK 5 million and is given annually to a single laureate or to several. Authors, illustrators, oral storytellers and reading promoters are eligible for the award, which is designed to promote interest in children’s and young adult literature.
Jaqueline Woodson was chosen for her work from her 2014 “Brown Girl Dreaming” adolescent novel, which discusses the author’s childhood as an African American growing up in the 1960s in South Carolina and New York. It has also been awarded the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature, the Coretta Scott King Book Award, and an NAACP Image Award for outstanding literary work.
"Who do we hurt and who do we heal with our words? As a writer I think about language but also about many many people who will read my words and what mirrors of themselves they will see in those words. " @JackieWoodson in her acceptance speech at the award ceremony. #ALMA2018 pic.twitter.com/UV9MEccLgf
— ALMA (@AlmaAward) 28 maj 2018
During week in Stockholm, Woodson visited the media along with a book signing and session with high school students from Mediagymnasiet i Nacka, Fryshuset gymnasium and Mariaskolan.