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The power of ‘silent’ books is something to shout about

Wordless picturebooks cross linguistic barriers and level literary playing fields for readers

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“What makes a book silent?” may sound like the start of a Christmas cracker joke, but it’s a question that staff and students at the University of Glasgow’s School of Education have been trying to answer, using “silent books” on loan from the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY).

Also known as wordless picturebooks – the “silent” comes from the Italian translation – this travelling exhibition comes after a collection assembled in 2012 by IBBY members across five continents, part of a powerful response to the influx of refugees on the tiny Mediterranean island of Lampedusa. The ...

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