Thursday, January 13, 2011

Huckleberry Finn

Huckleberry Finn
The Controversy
You may have been hearing in the news recently about a certain publisher wanting to take the book Huckleberry Finn and publish it by replacing the "N" word with the word slave.
This is a timely discussion in our home right now because my daughter who is a junior in high school is now reading this book in her English class and it has sparked some conversations at our dinner table.
My thought is how someone take anothers book and rewrite it to be politically correct? Isn't that censorship? Shouldn't we be entitled to read these books and not be protected from something that may offend us? I personally think that we learn from history and this is a great opportunity to open the doors to some discussion at home and in the classroom.
Apparently, the publisher has a different opinion. The book has been banned in some schools because of the "N" word and they feel that if they replace it with the word slave then perhaps more young people would have the opportunity to read it in class.
My fear is that if we start this nonsense then where does it end? Will we start picking apart all books? What happens when you go to the bookstore? How will you know what version you are picking up and purchasing? Will we start rating books on the front cover like movies?
"Oh sorry... you can't purchase that book. It has inappropriate language in it"
My vote is to keep the books on the shelf as the author had written and learn from the books.
What are your thoughts?

1 comment:

  1. Deborah, I think you have a valid concern. When it starts it doesn't end. It just seems insane to re-write a book like that. It is like re-writing history. Sadly there is something profoundly ill in the core of American values when we cannot accept the past, learn from it, and move forward in a more loving and compassionate way. Last night my husband and I watched Celine Dion's documentary on her world tour. It showed a segment where her family visited the site of the concentration camps and she just sobbed. She made the comment, "When you visit here, you understand." It was a very poignant moment. Tears ran down my face as I watched. Our children should not be shielded from the past lest we set them up to repeat it. Have a great Sunday. ~Blessings, Janet