12
   

It's banned books week

 
 
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 07:39 pm
@edgarblythe,
Here's two.

"The Bell Curve" by Richard J. Herrnstein and Charles Murray (which suggests a link between race and intelligence).

"The End of Racism" by Dinesh D'Souza

I would have added "Naked Lunch" by William Burroughs (which was one of the most misogynistic pieces of literature I have ever read)... but Izzy beat me to it (ha).

Would you want to ban these books from a public high school library?
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 07:50 pm
@maxdancona,
Another challenging one.

"Into the Heart: One Man's Pursuit of Love and Knowledge Among the Yanomama" by Kenneth Good (an anthropologist who accepted a child bride from a culture he was studying with this practice).

maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 07:54 pm
@maxdancona,
Edgar and Farmerman challenged me to come up with these examples. I would appreciate a simple "yes, I would ban this book" or "no, I would not ban this book" for each of these (let's from a public high school library to make it specific).

If the answer is "no, I would not ban these books" that I will retract my objection.
hingehead
 
  6  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 08:54 pm
@maxdancona,
Let me jump in, as an actual librarian.

No I wouldn't ban those books, but....

No library has an unlimited budget - and your question asks specifically about a public high school library - a sector near the bottom of the resource barrel.

You wouldn't find your books (all three of your titles are non-fiction) in this library because they don't have a role in supporting the library's raison d'etre, supporting student learning around the curriculum. Or even secondary goals around self-directed learning. I think there would be a shipload more books better able to meet the collection's mission.

Likewise I wouldn't add Atlas of Male Genital Disorders: A Useful Aid for Clinical Diagnosis by Marco Cusini to a public high school collection. I'm not banning it - it's expensive and irrelevant to the curriculum, even in the broadest sense. I wouldn't be surprised if your books were in a public library - assuming they have some value and aren't vanity publishing.

You might say would you accept them as donations. But (I work in a university library) we wouldn't unless they aligned with the subject areas we teach. Donations are mostly a costly pain in the ass (believer it or not), the processing associated with them outstrips their cost substantially. So if they aren't filling an identified teaching or research need we toss them in the bin.

So to answer your question: I wouldn't ban them. But that doesn't mean I'd add them to a library collection.




edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 09:05 pm
@maxdancona,
I said early on that high school students can process and assimilate anything. Why would you suggest I would ban books for them?
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 09:14 pm
@hingehead,
Thank you Hingehead.
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  -1  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 09:16 pm
@edgarblythe,
I didn't suggest that you would do anything, Edgar. I am asking if you would ban these books.
glitterbag
 
  2  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 09:21 pm
@edgarblythe,
Can we coax her back from Facebook?
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 09:26 pm
@glitterbag,
I doubt it. She is old enough to know her mind by now.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 09:27 pm
@maxdancona,
You just want to fight. I already answered you and I am not going to revisit the question after this.
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 09:50 pm
High school students are not confined to the school library. What they can't get there they can look for in the public library. (Good luck. Funding cuts have handicapped many libraries.)
0 Replies
 
glitterbag
 
  5  
Reply Wed 28 Sep, 2016 10:07 pm
@edgarblythe,
I don't know if this helps, but I have to ignore a certain poster because he really doesn't engage in discussion despite his pleas to do so. I find it confusing, so I opt out. If there was ever any give and take, I would engage, but how often do you want to be patronized, or told you are employing logical fallacies or illogical facts or whatever is the current hoped for withering put down if you are trying to trump another's views? It's repetitive, and tedious and a tad smug.

Back to the books. I didn't realize how many books had been banned. I've read almost everything but there are a few I started and just couldn't continue. I abandoned Lolita for probably the same reasons you did, A Clockwork Orange -- I got bored (it wasn't my thing), a few others I just couldn't get into.

I have read Catch-22 at least 4 times, but maybe because of my work environment. Many I remember fondly, but I seldom opt for fiction, I tend to read non-fiction, especially biographes and world history. I love reading about flamboyant personalities from the 1890's thru 193o's. Writing this I realize most of the personalities are women and how they managed in times that were not very forgiving. BUt you can't read their stories without bumping into many famous and influential men, anyhow, I find it fascinating.
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 04:17 am
@glitterbag,
I used to read more biographies than fiction. Oddly enough, I can't recall most of them offhand.
I never tackled Clockwork Orange.
I read Catch 22 two or three times. I guess because I am in full sympathy with Yossarian.
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 04:59 am
The idea may have been planted here that persons such as myself don't read non white male literature. It is a wrong supposition. I just am not aware of banned books by many of the ones I have read, or don't recall the titles of their books in some cases. Flannery O'Conner, Daphne Dumarier, Betty Friedan, George Elliot, Emily Dickenson - They just don't fit here. With a possible exception of Betty Friedan.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 05:00 am
@edgarblythe,
yeh, youve kept it a bigger subject than one of "written by white guys". (And , of course) each of us has his or her "favorite" cultural bias.
Ive not attemptd to hide mine. Ive been mostly interested in the treatment of science by the community or the churches,(and how these conditions were ultimately resolved)
XxSiCxX
 
  3  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 05:37 am
@edgarblythe,
I just wanted to say I have simply enjoyed reading over this thread without any of the points of gender, race, or anything else entering into it.

I have come away with far more just based off of the topic of censorship. As well as reading over what books have been read, enjoyed, and a little bit of the merits of the books themselves. Found it immensely interesting to hear what ones were tried put down and then picked back up and enjoyed at a later date.

Has given me food for thought on what ones I haven't read and should probably at least pick up to see if it is a fit for me. I personal could careless who has wrote what as long as it speaks to me on some level. My definition of good writing is that which invokes a emotional response from the reader.
0 Replies
 
glitterbag
 
  2  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 06:07 am
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:

I used to read more biographies than fiction. Oddly enough, I can't recall most of them offhand.
I never tackled Clockwork Orange.
I read Catch 22 two or three times. I guess because I am in full sympathy with Yossarian.


I think I mentioned I was hospitalized this past June with pneumonia, the nurse who was helping with my admission told me his name was Milo (his parents named him after Milo Minderbinder) I was thrilled, a twenty something had read that book. So we talked about some of the characters, I know I was very young the first time I read Catch-22 and I was happy that the book had not been forgotten.
When my second oldest nephew was about 14, I loaned him a copy of 'Johnny Got his Gun', that book has staying power. Kevin loved it, it was gratifying that he enjoyed the book as much as I did. Plus he returned it after he read it, so few people return books, I'm very happy with Kevin.
maxdancona
 
  -2  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 06:21 am
I see why I am confused about this thread. I thought it was a thread about banned books (which by definition are books that challenge prevalent ideas or sensibilities). This thread isn't really about banned books at all (which is why my comments may be out of place).

Maybe you should have titled this thread...

Nonthreatening books enjoyed by aging White educated middle-class liberals.
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 06:44 am
@maxdancona,
Why don't you get lost?
maxdancona
 
  -2  
Reply Thu 29 Sep, 2016 06:47 am
@edgarblythe,
Because I belong here. Most of the authors of the books you list challenged people's comfortable ways of thinking with ideas that flew in the face of the sensibilities of the time.

They challenged, questioned, annoyed and upset people. That's why these books were banned... people wanted them to just go away.

They are more like me than you. That irony amuses me.
0 Replies
 
 

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