Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Censoring YA Reading - OMG, Seriously?

"This time, the principal at St. Edmund Campion Secondary School has pulled the classic American novel To Kill a Mockingbird from the school’s Grade 10 classrooms. He made the decision after a parent lodged a verbal complaint about language used in Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel."

Of course, reader's circles, certainly not a new idea, is one way to respond to selecting texts for students: let students each choose their own books. I think that might make some people's(aka parents and adminstrators) heads explode...


Albert B. Casuga said...

Anyway one looks at this, the student will always be on the losing end. Censorship, when institutionalized in the school system or even the Church would simply fan a young mind's curiosity about what is being denied from it. The burning of books during the Dark Ages and the Inquisition is a shameful assault on civilization; neo-pagans do not have reasonable minority rights to protect. Leave works of art alone; they have never been known to subvert man's morality. Parents have a more distinct advantage of shaping up their children's value system so that no amount of curricula could supplant what was bred at home. Banning books is retrogressive. It is simply uncivilized. Are we so afraid of the strength of our moral codes so that we would risk another Dark Age? I am a former trustee of the Catholic School Board here, and I feel compelled to address the board when it considers the formal complaint against Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird's appropriateness for consideration by secondary school students. And I will be there.



Denise said...

Good luck with this. You certainly have our support. I'm grateful to be teaching college where we have a greater freedom of selection of texts, and where even my students feel more free in their reading. But I think if we aren't ever vigilient and honest to ourselves, our students, and our authors, the winds could just as easily change and be blowing on our shores.