September 21, 2017
Marley Dias, now twelve, continues to kick ass
by Taylor Sperry
The insanely precocious Marley Dias is on a mission to “change the system we live in.” And she’s starting—where else?—with what kids her age are reading.
Last year, we reported on #1000BlackGirlBooks, Marley’s campaign to collect “1,000 books where black girls are the main characters” rather than “white boys and their dogs” (enough already). She’s now gathered ten times that number, and sent the donations to schools and other organizations across the US and Jamaica. She’s also written a zine for Elle.com and a book for Scholastic; interviewed Hillary Clinton, Ava DuVernay, and Misty Copeland; and become a minor celebrity in her own right. (We mentioned she’s twelve, right?)
In a profile for Narratively, Marley told Britta Lokting she “wants to keep working on issues of diversity and literacy, hoping one day to perhaps host or produce a show and empower other kids to speak out.”
So while the present may be bleak AF, the future, if Marley Dias is any indication, is bright indeed.
If you’d like to contribute to her efforts, visit the GrassROOTS Community Foundation.
Taylor Sperry is a former Melville House editor.