Writers of Color 50 Book Challenge


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Not on a list, but when I was teaching high school long ago, parents objected to James Baldwin's Another Country for explicit sex and also gay themes (maybe a good area for you next year, that second one!)--not something they could get away with today, though the explict part might fly.

Maybe I haven't had enough coffee, but I lost you on the "next year" suggestion. Focus on gay themes for BBW next year? Or do a gay-themed version of 50books_poc?

Yeah, I can see Another Country lighting off QUITE a dispute. Did you get to teach it, in the end? And how did it go?

I was thinking about gay-themed banned books, but the other is an interesting thought, too.

It was an assignment where students could choose their own books (in the south in the early sixties, too) and one girl, whose sister was involved in the civil rights activities I was also in, heard about the Baldwin book, which I'd just recently read. But her parents made her choose another book.

I did teach Beloved much later in a community college and it went very well, though some of the students found it difficult to follow at first and all of us found it painful. I also taught Huckleberry Finn and Madame Bovary in the class, and had very interesting discussions on why these books were banned at one time or another and whether everyone should read them, and if so, at what age. There's a great Norton Critical Edition of Huck Finn with good essays pro and con teaching it to various ages and races of students.

Thank you for all these lists!

Thanks for posting this. The "racism" claims are just... mindboggling. Love the challenge by the Klan about producing racial strife. Is there a word for "beyond irony"?

Breaking the irony meter, is the way I usually see it put. And yeah, it totally does.

I find myself curious as to who is making the racism protests, and why. While researching these lists I ran across a ruling in which black families were claiming that books that depicted racism were increasing racist harassment in and around the school. Which is a different twist than what I had imagined most of these challenges to be, which was whites trying to suppress discussion of racism.

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