Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Reporting on the Challenge May 23, 2007

Take the "Banned Book Challenge" along with another 162 people, including the people listed below, who have pledged to read over 1672 books in the Banned Book Challenge.

Erin OFarrell, Canada, 3
Erin French, USA, 5
Anna OHara, Canada, 6
Michelle Smith, USA, 2
Big Orange, USA, 4

Take the "Banned Book Challenge" yourself. Register and set your goal, submit a completed title, and let us know when you have completed the challenge. The challenge runs until June 30, 2007.

1 comment:

fahrenheit451moderator said...

Sharon, Canada
Are you there God? It’s me, Margaret.

Sharon, Canada
Tom Sawyer

Sharon, Canada
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Sharon, Canada
Bury my heart at Wounded Knee

Sharon, Canada
Narnia Series by C. S. Lewis (6)

Sharon, Canada
Underground to Canada

Elaine, Canada
Flowers for Algernon
A mentally challenged adult has his intelligence boosted in a lab experiment. His sexual awakening might be something a parent would not want a teen to read about. Also there is some swearing. It is an excellent premise for a book and it delivers a punch at the end. It explores the question of what a human being is and I enjoyed the book very much.

Joanne, USA
In the Heat of the Night
A really good mystery combined with an unforgiving look at casual racism, In the Heat of the Night is even better than the movie. I can see no reason that this book ought to be banned. Though most of the Southern white protagonists expressed shocking (40 years later) opinions on the inferiority of Blacks in particular and people of color generally, this view was smashed by the events of the story. On the surface, this book might have been banned for the frequent use of the N word -- but I can imagine that the real reason would be wanting to gloss over the nations (really the Souths, in this case) awful legacy of racial discrimination.

Joanne, USA
Jacob Have I loved
I imagine this book was challenged because it describes a young girls sexual awakening (though no sexual activity happens in the book). Thats only a part of the lead characters coming of age: much more central to the story is her growth as an individual out of the shadow of her superior-in-every-way twin. I was touched by the story, though as with other books by Katherine Paterson, I found the end rushed and not completely satisfying. I would be a bit uncomfortable teaching this book to children under, say, 12; but thats not to say they would be nearly as uncomfortable reading it. Highly recommended for middle school+, girls especially. Mandatory for twins.

Joanne, USA
Beloved is a book-banners superfecta: racism, violence, sex, and the supernatural all play major roles in the plot. But it's possibly the best-written, most powerful novel I've ever read, and the descriptions of life as a slave/escaped slave rip your heart out.

If challenging a book means recommending that young children not read it, then I have to say I agree, because most of the children I know are much too sensitive to others pain to bear reading this. But for high-school students and adults, it surpasses every book I've ever read in bringing home the unmitigated evil that was (is) slavery. A great book.

Sally906, Australia
A wrinkle in time
banned because it "Promotes witchcraft, crystal balls, and demons;” sends a mixed message about good and evil; Jesus Christ is mentioned together with other individuals as a defender of the Earth against evil"

This book is a childrens classic and a Newberry medal winner - and I was amazed to find out that at some stages it has been on the banned book list. Various religious groups have banned it because they allege it undermines Christian beliefs, there are some biblical references in the book. The main complaint seems to objection to the book listing the name of Jesus Christ together with the names of great artists, philosophers, scientists, and religious leaders

Sally906, Australia
On the Banks of Plum Creek
On the Banks of Plum Creek was challenged for its depiction of Native Americans. I was surprised to see it on the banned/challenged book list - this is a book from a series I have read over and over again. I couldn't even remember any Native Americans appearing in the book.

Reading it again I was transported to another country, and another time in history. Oh how I wanted to join this family when I was little. The Ingalls have arrived at Plum Creek and move into a dugout. They exist on wild wheat, fish and rabbits until they can plant their first crop of wheat. Once it goes in, Pa makes a mistake - he buys the wood to build a beautiful little house for them....