An anonymous reader sent us a link to Alan Taylor’s flickr set, where he documents shifts in a children’s book, Richard Scarry’s Best Word Book Ever, between 1963 and 1991.

First, the book took out two stereotypical visual references to “Indians”:

Second, they added a reference to Channukah alongside Christmas;

Finally, they made several changes regarding gender.  Dad now helps with meals:

Jobs are no longer segregated by gender (the pilot is no longer “handsome,” the “baggage man” is now a “handler,” and the “pretty stewardess” is now a “flight attendant”):

The “brave hero,” “jumping gentleman,” and “fire fighter” are now gender neutral:

And girls are generally added, using bows (for better or worse) as a signifier:

An interesting sign of the times!  Thanks to Alan for so neatly putting up the comparisons!

Lisa Wade is a professor of sociology at Occidental College and the author of Gender: Ideas, Interactions, Institutions, with Myra Marx Ferree. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

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