Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Reading Banned Books

Do you enjoy a good book? I myself enjoy picking one up and actually read a little bit each day, most of my reading now days is on my kindle, and even though this is an excellent source to store and read your favorite books, not all books are available in this format, and those seem to be the ones you really want.

Bijoux over at Bytes From The Burbs did a post last week called Do Something Naughty: Read A Book click the link and give her post a read, she brought my attention to a serious subject.

Reading and Banning Books, how in the world did a title like To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee end up on a banned books list? This list states the reason “language, racial themes, it does "psychological damage to the positive integration process" and "represents institutionalized racism under the guise of good literature," and it's "filthy, trashy novel,"

Other books on this list include, The Lord Of The Flies, The Catcher in the Rye, The Great Gatsby, and Gone With The Wind, to name a few, I am just waiting for Fahrenheit 451 to end up on the list, Lord knows we should ban a book that tells the story of a man whose job is to burn books and the houses in which they are hidden, you know there can’t be a moral to this story, actually this is a good book too.

In my opinion all of these are great classics that we all should read, some of these we read in school, but they are worth reading again, reading is becoming a lost art and I am proud of my Daughter in Law for many things, but one is she has already introduced our Grandson to the library, and takes him there once a week.

How does someone get into a position that grants them the right to ban reading materials, I know we have to be aware of what our kids are exposed to in school, but at the same time shouldn’t we be aware of what is being hidden from them.

After seeing this list I did the only thing I could think of, I really wanted to show them all what I thought, I did a search and found myself a 1960 copyright hardcover edition of To Kill A Mockingbird and bought it, it arrived yesterday.

Now that I have it there is only one thing left to do, and that is to read it.

Some libraries sell books for fund raisers, I have picked up quite a few for three dollars a bag this way, and just before we went on vacation this year I broke down and bought the kindle edition of Gone With The Wind, while on vacation we stopped at a yard sale and the lady there gave me a bag of books she didn’t sell.

Look what was in the bottom.

Finding myself sitting in my recliner right in the middle of the crossfire between the Union and Confederate forces, stranded on a deserted island trying to feed myself, while at the same time fighting the forming society that is as frightening there as in real life, viewing a trial to save a man accused of something he would never do, and looking out the window hoping the firemen do not see that I am actually reading a book rather than watching TV.

If you want to read something that has been banned for violence, language, sexual content, racial slurs, alcohol abuse, prostitution, statements defamatory to minorities, God, women, the disabled, and using the Lord's name in vain, these are a few titles that will fill the bill.

And if you want to read a really classic novel, put aside the thoughts of those trying to hide our history by controlling what we read, look at this same list of books, because contrary to popular belief, they are actually classics.

Lose yourself in a good book, reach back and revisit some of the classics you once read, and pick up a copy of some you may have forgotten, putting a few of these banned books on your bookshelf just may end up being the only copy you can find when it comes time for your grandchild to read it.

28 comments:

  1. The most dangerous words ever written are the ones that others decide we can not read.

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  2. Funny how they have no problem banning a book, but look at all the trash on TV! Too bad they can't ban some of that BS.

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    1. Hey Ms. A, Funny how they seem to have no problem in this area, and yes there is a load of trash there.

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  3. One of the best things my mother did for me is to refuse to censor my reading material, a gift I also gave to our children. Another book that's banned in some places is "The Kite Runner". If you haven't read it, I recommend it highly.

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    1. Hi Susan, Your Mom sounds like a smart woman, I like to give children the right to make their own decisions especially when it comes to reading materials, your children will respect you for passing this along to them.

      I have not read that one and will give it a look, Thank You

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  4. Yes, I too read the post on Bijoux's blog about book banning and was shocked, especially when it came to "To Kill a Mockingbird."

    “language, racial themes, it does "psychological damage to the positive integration process" and "represents institutionalized racism under the guise of good literature," and it's "filthy, trashy novel,"

    Oh paaaaaleese! Yes, both the book and play show how in history there was a great deal of racism and prejudice. But the whole moral and lesson of the story is to show how WRONG it was.

    If we don't have books that teach children about the past, they'll never learn to change these things in the future.

    "And if you want to read a really classic novel, put aside the thoughts of those trying to hide our history by controlling what we read, look at this same list of books, because contrary to popular belief, they are actually classics."

    Exactly.

    Awesome post, Jimmy!!!!

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    1. Hey Ron, I was really floored to see To Kill A Mockingbird on a banned book list, I was seriously looking for it at the time and believe it or not found it for less than five bucks shipping included, best five bucks I ever spent.

      "If we don't have books that teach children about the past, they'll never learn to change these things in the future."

      Wise words my Friend

      Thank You Buddy

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  5. so crazy!! I do not believe any book should be banned. ever. even the bad ones!!

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    1. I agree Annmarie, I like to make my own decisions as to what to read, no one else should be allowed to take our choices away.

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  6. I once stood on the spot in Berlin where the Nazis burned so many books. It was a haunting place. Censoring is always a sign of desperation.

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    1. Stephen, I can only imagine the emotions raised by standing in such a place, I pray we won't end up with such a place here.

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  7. Yes, because banning something is clearly going to encourage people not to read it.

    Don't know how many times people have tried to condemn something only to make it more popular/watched/read than ever before. ._.

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    1. Yes DWei, It seems attempting to censor anything makes it more popular, maybe this will work in favor of our classics on the banned list.

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  8. I am an avid reader so I'm appalled that those old classics are being banned. Haven't the idiots who decide on banning read some of the modern stuff that is destined to corrupt young minds?

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    1. Valerie, I really don't think the people in charge of banning these books have even read them, it appears as has been mentioned they seem to only look for certain words or terms rather than read the storyline.

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  9. Thanks for the shout out, Jimmy! As a person who has read all the classics mentioned on the banning list, I must be a very corrupt person (insert evil laugh)

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    1. You are very welcome Bijoux, See what you started Ha Ha, I think the majority of us will have to join you on that list of corrupt people, if respecting our classics gets me there then add my name :)

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  10. I want to read To Kill a Mockingbird. I loved Gone with the Wind and watched the movie right after. I don't understand the hate and judgement on controversial books. Isn't that just as bad of a behavior as what they say is in the books. Lol!

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    1. Very good point Angelia, I have read controversial books and disagree with the subject matter but that doesn't mean the book should be banned, I feel they should be there so we have a choice, isn't that what it is all about, being able to make our own decisions rather than being told what our decision should be.

      Yes their behavior is much worse than what they are claiming to ban, but sad to say they cannot see it.

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  11. Ooooo, Jimmy, you are a man after my own heart! Did you know Huckleberry Finn was banned in its time because parents didn't want their children talking and thinking like Huck? Of all literary characters, he is the one we should want our children to be like--open to change and willing to see the humanity in all people.

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    1. Hey Betty, Good to see you my dear friend, as advanced as our world is supposed to be it seems our minds remain closed to people who embrace change and the simple respect for our fellow human beings. People like Huck can teach us all a lesson if we allow him to :)

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  12. I'm a big reader of books and I can't understand how some of them get published never mind banned! There is a lot of trash out there, but I love all of the classics and can't understand how they got banned.
    We read Huck and Lord of the Flies for our English exams, To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my favourites, along with Tess of the D'Urbervilles. It would be really sad to see them go...but as I already have the books, I'll just hide them away!
    I don't think it was that long ago since Lady Chatterlys Lover was brought back from being banned in the U.K. either.
    Some of today's "modern" books are total rubbish, and I love books rather than read them on Kindle. Nothing can beat the feel and smell of a new book.
    Very good point that you have raised here, Jimmy.

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    1. Hi Megan, Yes there is a lot of trash out there it seems, but some people evidently like them so they have their place, the classics being deemed unfit simply because of their place in history is a crying shame, we need material like this to remind us where we came from.

      Kindle is a convenient way to acquire reading material and it is handy in it's own sense, but the books worth keeping are the ones withing reach on the bookshelf, because like you said Kindle cannot replace the feel or smell of a good book.

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  13. Well, let me line up behind you and Bijoux, because I have read a number of books from that banned list!

    I go back and forth between reading books on my iPad and "real" books. However, I do feel a little stupid when I tap on a word in a "real" book, trying to highlight it to look up its definition.

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    1. That is a benefit of the e-readers, if you need a definition it is there, tapping on a word in a real book does make you look up to see if anyone is watching Ha Ha

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  14. First time visiting/commenting on your blog. I think the best thing a parent can do for a child is give them the love of reading and the opportunity of a public library so I commend your daughter-in-law for doing that for your grandchild. In our frequent moves, one of the first things I do after I get settled in is to find the local library and get a card; how wonderful to get free books to read!

    To Kill a Mockingbird is in my top 10 of favorite books; I read it over and over again the summer between my 8th and 9th grade, more years ago than I care to say, but so glad my mom encouraged reading and never said what we could or could not read. Gone With the Wind was another favorite of mine, read again between 8th and 9th grade. Being immersed in a good book in my opinion is a wonderful way to spend the afternoon.

    may tomorrow be a great day for you and yours!

    betty

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    1. Welcome Betty, I am proud to have you join us, I am much the same way as you whenever I move somewhere one of the first things I do is look at the libraries, and or course get myself a card.

      One here in the next town does a fund raiser, three dollars for a bag of books and you get to load up the bags, I think this is an excellent way for parents to pick up books for their children and also themselves, I imagine a lot of libraries have similar fundraisers.

      A Wonderful Day to you also.

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