Slaughterhouse-Five: Jumbled, Jangled… and Burned.

Slaughterhouse-Five revolves around Billy Pilgrim, who like Vonnegut himself, was a POW in Dresden when it was firebombed during World War Two. Billy has “come unstuck in time.” And to complicate matters further, he is abducted by aliens, two-foot-tall creatures shaped like toilet plungers, from the planet Tralfamadore. It's been challenged at least eighteen times, primarily for “obscene language,” and “anti-American” sentiment. And yes, it was actually burned as a result of one of those challenges.

2023-03-13T15:16:10-05:00By |Banned Books|0 Comments

The Scarlet Letter: A – for Adultery, Antinomian, or America Itself?

Historically speaking, whenever The Scarlet Letter has been banned or challenged, the objections have come from all directions. Nathaniel Hawthorne’s name may be inextricably linked with the Puritans, but he clearly had a complicated relationship with his subject matter. He’s renowned for his deep symbolism, psychological insight, and the “mystical blackness” that pervades his work. So, The Scarlet Letter is about much more than a misbehaving minister.

2023-03-13T15:26:20-05:00By |Banned Books|0 Comments

The Catcher in the Rye: A Twentieth-century Jeremiad

Salinger’s novel is said to have been “yanked out of American schools more than almost any other title.” There's a laundry list of reasons why, but essentially because its protagonist challenges the status quo. But Salinger’s book is about much more than the antics of a rebellious teenager. The Catcher in the Rye is a re-fashioned jeremiad.

2023-03-13T15:29:24-05:00By |Banned Books|0 Comments

The Lottery: Who’s the Lucky Scapegoat?

Who knows what was going through Shirley Jackson’s head as she walked home from the market, just before she put her daughter Joanne in the playpen, the frozen vegetables in the freezer, and The Lottery down on paper. But, the short story she wrote that afternoon ends with a famously shocking plot twist, one that has provoked controversy since the instant it appeared in The New Yorker.

2023-03-13T17:52:17-05:00By |Banned Books|0 Comments

The Giver: A World Without Humanities

The Giver is about Jonas, an eleven-year-old boy who lives in a futuristic society where life appears to be nothing less than idyllic. If everything is so perfect, why has it been one of the most controversial books in American schools since its release in 1993? Like most books about so-called utopias, this society has a dark underbelly, one some parents see as “too dark” for middle-schoolers.

2023-03-13T18:17:39-05:00By |Banned Books|0 Comments
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