Digital book applications have emerged as new formats of picture books, with an integration of digitally mediated resources to construct meaning. These picture book apps are written artefacts that contain cultural messages and values about the world that children live in. Dually, as semiotic artefacts, they consist of meaning potentials through the concept of interactivity along with other technologically created multimodal resources. These resources form the semiotic surfaces of picture book apps and thus the picture book app is classified as Semiotic Technology. Picture book apps as semiotic technology are instrumental in changing the way in which current young readers engage with stories. The multimodal aspect is amplified in this digital text by the concept of interactivity. In recognition of the impact of these semiotic artefacts on users, this case study proposes a model based on a semiotic technology approach (media dimension) and the concept of interactivity, to interpret meaning making in digital picture book apps for children. Through a qualitative approach that has employed purposeful sampling, a digital picture book app, Green Riding Hood, has been selected as a case study for this article to illustrate how Asian identities are represented through interactive features. It is found that, through semiotic meaning-making captured in interactivity defining features, South Asian (Indian) identity markers like ethnicity, religion, age, and gender have been represented as multicultural or diversity awareness conduits to users. Through main values like unity (friendship) and health and fitness (including environmentalism), this digitized children’s literature thus is an ideal mirror, window, and door to society. This approach on digitized picture books is deemed important to be understood and recognized because types of messages from children’s literatures that get across through lenses of children can impact their path of identity realization and understanding


Asian identities, digital children’s picture book apps, intra-text interactivity, meaning-making, media dimension, semiotic technology

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Kritika Kultura
Department of English
School of Humanities
Ateneo de Manila University

The Philippine Commission on Higher Education (CHED) declares Kritika Kultura as a CHED-recognized journal under the Journal Challenge Category of its Journal Incentive Program.

International Board of Editors

Jan Baetens
Faculty of Arts
Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven (Belgium)

Joel David
Professor of Cultural Studies
Inha University (South Korea)

Michael Denning
Professor of American Studies and English
Department of English
Yale University (US)

Faculty of Cultural Sciences
Universitas Gadjah Mada (Indonesia)

Regenia Gagnier
Professor of English
University of Exeter (UK)

Leela Gandhi
John Hawkes Professor of the Humanities and English
Brown University (US)

Inderpal Grewal
Professor of Women's Gender and Sexuality Studies
Professor of South Asian Studies, Ethnicity, Race and Migration Studies
Yale University (US)

Peter Horn
Professor Emeritus and Honorary Lifetime Fellow
University of Cape Town (South Africa)
Honorary Professor and Research Associate in German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

Anette Horn
Professor of German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

David Lloyd
Distinguished Professor of English
University of California, Riverside (US)

Bienvenido Lumbera
National Artist for Literature
Professor Emeritus
University of the Philippines

Rajeev S. Patke
Director of the Division of Humanities
Professor of Humanities
Yale NUS College (Singapore)

Vicente L. Rafael
Giovanni and Amne Costigan Endowed Professor of History
University of Washington (US)

Vaidehi Ramanathan
Department of Linguistics
University of California, Davis (US)

Temario Rivera
Professorial Lecturer
Department of Political Science
University of the Philippines

E. San Juan, Jr.
Philippines Studies Center (US)

Neferti X.M. Tadiar
Professor of Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
Barnard College (US)
Director of the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race
Columbia University (US)

Antony Tatlow
Honorary Professor of Drama
Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)