BBW: The Huh? Edition

Here are some books challenged for head-scratching reasons:

  • Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenreich. For  one person’s belief it contained “economic fallacies” and socialism. We are in the worst economy since the Great Depression. Every news cycle there’s a story about people not getting by financially. High school economics students should have access to the book and make up their own mind.
  • The Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary. A parent’s complaint has led to a consideration of a permanent classroom ban because it defined a term heard way back in the 1990s with the Clinton scandal. The dictionary is the place to go to for an accurate definition. Depending on the age of the students, a simpler dictionary may not have words that promote “intellectual” rigor that parents/banners so desire for their children.
  • And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell. Why does this half to be more than the pictoral representation of real penguins who once took care of an egg Three Men and a Baby style? Stop pushing your agenda and impressions on children and their books. That goes for both sides?

ETA: Oh boy, just read that some parent is challenging The Hunger Games. She called it “filth.” Yes, the fictional acts are filthy and are roundly condemned by the characters. That’s the whole point of the book. A book, by the way, in which society has degraded to barbaric totalitarianism, and while pen and paper exists, books do not.

Discussion question: Matched, as well as  The Hunger Games, lack varying forms of literacy.  What other dystopic novels feature an illiterate (to any degree) populace? What role do you think the lack of books and writing plays into the degradation of social values?

It’s fairly easy to answer, I think. People who urge schools and libraries to withhold reading material from others ought to think about the slippery slope they’re toeing.

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