Normally I would be the first to cry foul at someone using racial words. However, I think censoring 'Huckleberry Finn' to get rid of the "N" words is going "Monkey Fighting bad."
“I found myself right out of graduate school at Berkeley not wanting to pronounce that word when I was teaching either ‘Huckleberry Finn’ or ‘Tom Sawyer,’ ” he said. “And I don’t think I’m alone.”
So Gribben has produced a new, expurgated version of the two books, to be released in February. In 219 spots, the text replaces the word "nigger" with the word "slave" and also substitutes the word "Indian" for "injun" wherever that word was used.
The N-word belongs in 'Huckleberry Finn,' " insists Elon James White in Salon. "The book, which deals directly with racism, is not better served by erasing the racial slur." For White, it's all about fear – America's fear of confronting the truth about its racist past. If we allow ourselves to expurgate history (or literature), he argues, "we will find ourselves with a generation that's woefully misinformed and it will be completely our fault."
Later in the same source:
In fact, Meadows points out, the Brooklyn Public Library considered banning the books due to their "coarseness, deceitfulness and mischievous practices." A librarian there wrote to Twain asking him to defend his books.
Twain responded: "I am greatly troubled by what you say. I wrote 'Tom Sawyer' & 'Huck Finn' for adults exclusively, & it always distressed me when I find that boys and girls have been allowed access to them. The mind that becomes soiled in youth can never again be washed clean. I know this by my own experience, & to this day I cherish an unappeased bitterness against the unfaithful guardians of my young life, who not only permitted but compelled me to read an unexpurgated Bible through before I was 15 years old. None can do that and ever draw a clean sweet breath again on this side of the grave."
When it comes to verbal swordplay, it's hard to best the master
I know this not government censorship, but I found it interesting nevertheless.