Author(s): John Lewis and Andrew Aydin
Artist(s): Nate Powell
Languages: English, French (Books 1 & 2), Italian (Book 1)
Grade Level(s): 7-12
Mature Content?: Racist Language, Violence
March is the three part, graphic novel autobiography of Congressman and civil rights leader John Lewis’s life. It begins all the way back in his early life, growing up in rural Alabama, documenting his involvement in the struggle for civil rights, starting after the Supreme Court’s decision in Brown v. Board when he started to correspond with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., including the sit-ins at Woolworth’s, jail time, and the March on Washington. The series shows the struggle for justice and civil rights, and the difficulty of non-violent resistance from his perspective. Lewis originally wrote March as a full length book but realized it wasn’t reaching the young Black population he had hoped, prompting him to push for this graphic edition.
Ideally, March could be used as a mentor text when learning about the American Civil Rights Movement in a social studies classroom, or even when learning about resistance movements, more generally. It would make learning about the movement that much more real and impactful for students to have a text like this, showing the struggle from a first-hand perspective. Similarly, it would be an excellent choice in an English class to learn about narrative structure and autobiography – what is important, and what can be left out, for example, and how point of view can change.