• 100 Banned Books (31-40)

    Chugging along…maybe this will be done in time for Banned Books Week…

    Read the rest of the list HERE.


    31
    TITLE: Kaffir Boy
    AUTHOR: Mark Mathabane
    ISBN: 0684848287
    Plot Summary: This is the author’s account of what it was like to grow up under South Africa’s apartheid regime.
    Complaints: Sexual content, offensive language
    Removed from sophomore reading list at Armijo High School in Fairfield, CA (2000) due to its sexual content.
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: We don’t have apartheid here. There’s no reason for kids to learn about it.
    Links:
    MATHABANE

    32
    TITLE: Blubber
    AUTHOR: Judy Blume
    ISBN: 0440407079
    Plot Summary: Jill goes along with the rest of the fifth-grade class in tormenting Linda, her classmate, but then finds out what it’s like when she, too, becomes a target.
    Aden says: I remember reading this when I was younger, and crying because I know what the ridiculed girl went through. While it might be hard for kids of today to identify with characters from another time, the ideas and moral of the book is something that should not be taken away.
    Complaints: Offensive language, unsuited to age group
    The characters curse and the mean-spirited ringleader is never punished for her cruelty.
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: It’s mean. It shows kids how to be mean. What do you mean kids are supposed to feel sympathy? They’re kids! They don’t know about that yet.
    Links:
    Texas public schools banned 42 books last year

    33
    TITLE: Killing Mr. Griffin
    AUTHOR: Lois Duncan
    ISBN: 0440945151
    Plot Summary: A group of teens hate their English teacher. So, they kidnap him–just to scare him–but he dies, and the kids are left to deal with the consequences…or hide from them…
    Complaints: Offensive language, violence, sexual content
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: Duh. It will make kids want to kill their teachers.
    Links:
    Homework Helpers

    34
    TITLE: Halloween ABC
    AUTHOR: Eve Merriam
    ISBN: 068980198X
    Plot Summary: Silly Halloween poems and art help teach kindergarteners the alphabet.
    Complaints: Promotes Satanism
    Halloween is of pagan origin and the book is “evil.” Challenged at the Douglas County Library in Roseburg, Oreg. (1989) because the book encourages devil worshipping. Challenged at the Howard County, Md. School libraries (1991) because “there should be an effort to tone down Halloween and there should not be books about it in the schools.” Challenged in the Wichita, Kans. Public schools (1991) because it is “satanic and disgusting.” Challenged at the Acres Green Elementary School in Douglas County, Colo. (1992). Challenged and retained, but will be shelved with other words generally available only to older students and won’t be used in future Halloween displays at the Federal Way School District in Seattle, Wash. (1992). The compromise was for a group of parents who objected to the book’s satanic references. Challenged, but retained in the Othello, Wash. Elementary school libraries (1993) because the book “promotes violent criminal and deviant behavior.” Challenged but retained at the Ennis, Texas Public Library (1993). Challenged in the Cameron Elementary School library in Rice Lake, Wis. (1993). Because the “poems promote satanism, murder, and suicide.” The book was retained. Challenged in the Spokane, Wash. School District library (1994) by a father who found the poems morbid and satanic. In particular, the parent disapproved of one poem which “appears to be a chant calling forth the Devil.” Challenged in the Sandwich, Mass. Public Library (1995) because it is “too violent for young children.”
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: ‘Trick or treat’ is a code phrase for ‘Worship Lucifer!’
    Links:
    ACLU of Washington: Religious Freedom

    35
    TITLE: We All Fall Down
    AUTHOR: Robert Cormier
    ISBN: 0440215560
    Plot Summary: Four boys vandalize a Cape Code home and assault the 14-year-old girl that lives there. As she lays in a coma, her sister unwittingly falls in love with one of the thugs, and they are all stalked by ‘The Avenger’.
    Complaints: Violence, sex, offensive language
    Pulled out of elementary and junior high school libraries in Stockton after parents complained that it glorifies alcoholism and violence, contains a rape scene and its characters use too much profanity.
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: Again, I say that kids cannot empathize with anyone properly. You keep feeding them this stuff, and they’re going to grow up to be serial killers. Did I finish reading the book? Hell no!
    Links:
    Natrona panel backs contested book

    36
    TITLE: Final Exit
    AUTHOR: Derek Humphry
    ISBN: 0440507855
    Plot Summary: A look at euthanasia, including statements of the position of various religious denominations on the subject.
    Complaints: Promotes suicide
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: Um, if you put this in front of kids, then they’re going to ask questions, and I don’t feel like answering them!
    Links:
    A sober guide to ending it all

    37
    TITLE: The Handmaid’s Tale
    AUTHOR: Margaret Atwood
    ISBN: 038549081X
    Plot Summary: Offred is a Handmaid of the Republic of Gilead, where women do not control their own bodies. Women are no longer allowed to read, and once a month she must subject herself to ‘the Commander’ and pray he will make her pregnant–or she will be worthless.
    Word from the mouse: …like 1984 except from a female pov. Full Review
    Complaints: Sexual themes, offensive language
    Removed from the Chicopee, Mass. High School English class reading list because it contains profanity and sex.
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: Hey! Don’t ban this one! It’s every Bubba’s paradise!
    Links:
    Book-A-Minute SF/F: The Handmaid’s Tale

    38
    TITLE: Julie of the Wolves
    AUTHOR: Jean Craighead George
    ISBN: 0064400581
    Plot Summary: An Eskimo girl runs away from home and a forced marriage, gets lost on the Tundra, and is befriended by a pack of wolves.
    Complaints: Sexual themes, anti-family
    Challenged in Mexico, Mo. (1982) because of the book’s “socialist, communist, evolutionary, and anti-family themes.” Challenged in Littleton, Colo. (1989) school libraries because “the subject matter was better suited to older students, not sixth graders.” Challenged at the Erie Elementary School in Chandler, Ariz. (1994) because the book includes a passage that some parents found inappropriate in which a man forcibly kisses his wife. Challenged in the classrooms and school libraries in Palmdale, Calif. (1995) because the book describes a rape. Removed from the sixth-grade curriculum of the New Brighton Area School District in Pulaski Township, Pa. (1996) because of a graphic marital rape scene. Challenged at the Hanson Lane Elementary School in Ramona, Calif. (1996) because the award-winning book includes an attempted rape of a 13-year-old girl.
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: Don’t you see the theme here? Almost all of these books are about gays, women and minorities. We don’t need to stir up this kind of trouble in schools.
    Links:
    ALA Editions: Interview with Pat Scales

    39
    TITLE: The Bluest Eye
    AUTHOR: Toni Morrison
    ISBN: 0452273056
    Plot Summary: 11-year-old Pecola Breedlove is a black girl who prays that her eyes will turn blue, so that she will be beautiful.
    Complaints: Sexual themes, offensive language, racial themes
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: More porn disguised as black suffrage. Of course, the little girl wants to have blue eyes and blonde hair! What’s wrong with that?
    Links:
    19th Annual Literary Festival–Old Dominion University

    40
    TITLE: The ‘What’s Happening to My Body?’ Book for Girls
    AUTHOR: Lynda Maderas
    ISBN: 1557044449
    Plot Summary: A discussion of the changes that take place for girls during puberty.
    Complaints: Sexual themes
    Missing from the Northside Intermediate School library in Milton, Wis. (1994) after a parent complained “I don’t think my ten-year-old son, or anyone’s, needs to know that stuff.” Challenged, but retained at the Washoe County Library System in Reno, Nev. (1994) because “nobody in their right mind would give a book like that to children on their own, except the library.”
    Solonor Says Ban It Because: Eww! I don’t want to hear about this! I’m putting my hands over my ears, until you get rid of this book…lalalalalalalala…
    Links:
    St. Charles Public Library–The Facts of Life

    NEXT: 100 Banned Books (41-50)

    Wednesday, September 4th, 2002 at 01:11
  • Wednesday, September 4th, 2002 at 01:44 | #1

    Judy FUCKING Blume? Good god. Ok tomorrow I’m looking at this a little deeper. Thanks for the heads up.

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