In honor of banned book week I’m reading two banned/challenged books. First I’m re-reading To Kill a Mockingbird for my book club.
To Kill a Mockingbird is often banned or challenged for “racial slurs, profanity, and frank discussion of rape”.
And then I’ll be reading Speak because I’ve been up in arms over the various reasons people want the book banned, but I’ve never actually read it. Which makes me almost as bad as those seeking to ban books without reading them… almost. I’m really looking forward to it, and I recently read Wintergirls so I’ve no doubt I’ll like Speak.
Most recently Speak has been challenged for language and rape, which this moron likens to soft pornography. I hope he doesn’t have any sons. He also disapproves of Slaughterhouse Five and Twenty Boy Summer. It’s like stepping into the movie Footloose, only where dancing and reading are banned and we’re being asked to play the role Kevin Bacon did.
One of the comments to his article struck a chord with me. A commenter brought up the point that any book, taken out of context, can be viewed as dirty or offensive (Seriously, the next time you watch the movie version of the first Harry Potter, try not to dissolve into giggles during their broomstick lessons, trust me, it can not be done, gutter-minds!).
I read so called “adult fiction” when I was a kid, I was practically weened on Stephen King, and yet there was plenty of stuff that was way over my head when I first started reading, and it didn’t do any permanent damage. Hmm, I realize that’s arguable, but I’ve yet to be court ordered to undergo a psych evaluation, so that’s saying something, right?
In conclusion, piss book banning people off, read banned books. Read banned books aloud as you’re walking down the street so people will think you both crazy and offensive. Blog about your favorite banned or challenged book. Heck, if you’re more photogenic then me, Vlog about banned books. Tell book banners to kiss your binding!