Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

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Girdot
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Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Girdot » Fri Feb 20, 2009 3:48 am UTC

My comp class is doing a project on banned/challenged books, but before I can begin I have to pick one. I've found some lists online, but I have no idea about any of them. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Sal-Paradise » Fri Feb 20, 2009 4:17 am UTC

1984, Catch 22 and Catcher in the Rye are all excellent, commonly banned books that you could easily read. Catch 22 is especially awesome. Look for the thread a little ways down for more.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Mzyxptlk » Fri Feb 20, 2009 10:36 am UTC

Mein Kampf? It's not the most original of choices, but it's definitely banned/challenged. It's also an awful book, but that on a sidenote.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby smw543 » Fri Feb 20, 2009 11:15 am UTC

It would help if you described the assignment so we would know to recommend good books (i.e.: Catch-22) or bad books (i.e.: Mein Kampf.)
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby ameretrifle » Sat Feb 21, 2009 8:36 am UTC

Not to mention what sort of books you enjoy, assuming your intent is to choose something you'll probably enjoy reading. Or any special criteria (in this country, in the past, banned or challenged, children's or adult).

I'll emphatically third Catch-22 either way. Harry Potter is a pretty easy target. The Golden Compass apparently gets challenged a lot, Black Beauty too. You might've found this already, but here's a list of ones available online if that'd be more convenient for you. If plays count, you might give Lysistrata a shot-- Aristophanes can be pretty damn funny if you like bawdy humor.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby sje46 » Sat Feb 21, 2009 10:50 am UTC

Slaughterhouse-five, "because of "foul language, a section depicting a picture of an act of bestiality, a reference to 'Magic Fingers' attached to the protagonist's bed to help him sleep, and the sentence: 'The gun made a ripping sound like the opening of the fly of God Almighty."'"
It's an awesome book, and not boring.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby netcrusher88 » Sat Feb 21, 2009 11:07 pm UTC

Fahrenheit 451 has (ironically) been banned at various times. It's a good book, too, even if you wind up with something else for your project.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby psyck0 » Sun Feb 22, 2009 6:33 pm UTC

Leaves of Grass (Walt Whitman) has some GREAT poetry in my opinion.

Maurice has probably been banned somewhere because it's about gay love, and it is an absolutely FANTASTIC book.

Origin of Species might be an original choice. Also likely banned sometime, somewhere.

Another list of banned books: http://www.banned-books.com/bblista-i.html

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Narsil » Mon Feb 23, 2009 8:21 pm UTC

@psyck0:

I skimmed over you post and thought you said that Leaves of Grass was a book about gay love.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby smw543 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 1:44 am UTC

Narsil wrote:@psyck0:

I skimmed over you post and thought you said that Leaves of Grass was a book about gay love.

Which, to a small extent, it was (depending on who you ask.)
Spoiler:
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby thatguy » Tue Feb 24, 2009 11:46 pm UTC

Of Mice and Men

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Jahoclave » Wed Feb 25, 2009 12:20 am UTC

Catch-22 as it's a fucking awesome book.

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Re: stabbed in the face Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby teamcorndog » Thu Feb 26, 2009 3:47 pm UTC

This children's book about the gay penguins. "And Tango Makes Three". It would take you about 10 minutes to read, and there's a lot to be said about it and why it's controversial and how silly that is. And it's ADORABLE.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby thatguy » Tue Mar 03, 2009 1:50 am UTC

If you can comfortable with it not being written in SWE, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a good one.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby smw543 » Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:42 am UTC

thatguy wrote:If you can comfortable with it not being written in SWE, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a good one.

Seconded. I think that book has the unusual distinction of having the highest combined number of bannings and appointments as assigned reading. I've had to read it twice, once in high school and once more in college; a friend of mine has had to read it for four separate classes!
Spoiler:
LE4dGOLEM wrote:Now you know the difference between funny and sad.
Ubik wrote:But I'm too fond of the penis to let it go.
gmalivuk wrote:If you didn't want people to 'mis'understand you, then you probably should have tried saying something less stupid.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby psyck0 » Wed Mar 04, 2009 4:58 pm UTC

It is a very strange book. I am not sure I "got" it.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby thatguy » Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:58 pm UTC

psyck0 wrote:It is a very strange book. I am not sure I "got" it.

I've heard several interpretations. Three of my favorites:

-About how wrong slavery was.

-About what to do with the freed slaves.

-About the conflict between society and conscience. (My favorite; and suggested by Twain himself, I think)

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby EdgarJPublius » Thu Mar 05, 2009 1:42 am UTC

Les Miserables was banned shortly after it's release for such things as it's depiction of prostitution and other moral verboten of the time, as well as glorification of the French Revolution.

It's a wonderful book and I recommend it for banned book projects because it isn't one of the cliched banned/controversial books that everyone else always recommend.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby GoodRudeFun » Thu Mar 05, 2009 9:13 am UTC

The other thread about Ishmael reminds me that it'd be great for this project (if you still need one). I'm sure its been banned before, and while I've heard of it as assigned reading, I've never actually seen a case where it was...


its a good book though.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby vers » Wed Mar 25, 2009 6:15 am UTC

Slaughterhouse 5, Catcher in the Rye (my pick, it's less ideological), Animal Farm

I liked Catch 22 but found it a little repetitive and hard to push all the way to the end, but it's a good one as well.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Kendo_Bunny » Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:19 pm UTC

It depends- what kind of books do you like to read? For instance, if you were the type who enjoyed slice-of-life fictional autobiography, 'Heaven to Betsy' by Maud Hart Lovelace was banned because the main character and her sister change churches (not religions, churches) and this was considered too controversial when it was published.

Although 'Catch-22' is my all-time favorite book...

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:26 pm UTC

I remember in 8th grade reading Haroun (Haroum? can't remember) and the Sea of Stories (i think?) by Rushdie, and really, really enjoying it. It's a very colorful childrens story, that I'd best describe as Dr. Seuss meets Life of Pi meets Wizard of Oz.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby smw543 » Thu Mar 26, 2009 7:45 am UTC

It's probably about time this thread was laid to rest; it's turning into a compendium of banned books, most of which are repetitions (Catch-22 has been mentioned six times.)

Unless we want to turn it into a discussion on the banning of books.

In that vein: banning books - ever justified?
Spoiler:
LE4dGOLEM wrote:Now you know the difference between funny and sad.
Ubik wrote:But I'm too fond of the penis to let it go.
gmalivuk wrote:If you didn't want people to 'mis'understand you, then you probably should have tried saying something less stupid.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby vers » Thu Mar 26, 2009 9:30 pm UTC

no. some people say its better for schools to ban books than for books to be banned from ownership outright, but without the critical review of these books in the schools, children will never develop the ability to question themselves or their authority in a thoughtful way. It essentially has the same result, just delayed by a generation and without the public outrage. I say its worse, in fact, for being so subversive to the public consciousness.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby thatguy » Fri Mar 27, 2009 2:49 am UTC

No. Censorship is never justified. Ideas aren't "dangerous."

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Kendo_Bunny » Fri Mar 27, 2009 1:57 pm UTC

For school libraries, there is the issue of appropriateness. I don't really see not buying a copy of 'Sex' by Madonna for an elementary school as a ban. I guess it's a ban if the material is age-appropriate and considered relevant?

Of course, then you can get into the argument over whether every single library must own every single book to prevent censorship...

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Internetmeme » Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:33 pm UTC

My High School has a copy of Mein Kemp. You read right. The Hitler biogrophy. "My Troubles".
Do I win this thread? :P

But an article I read a while back about censorship sums it up right, I don't remember where it's from though. But in a nutshell:

The self-proclaimed censors of books like Harry Potter and The Golden Compass censor them and other books often because of violence, magic, witchcraft, anti-church ideas, religion, and some others for sexual scenes. If they banned those books, then what's next? Merlin, King Arthur, Hamlet, or even the "worst" of them all. Here's some hints of what's in the book: genocide, religion, the devil, religous wars, murder, lying, apocolyptic ideals, rape, (gay rape, gang rape, and gay gang rape appear in the same chapter), sex, orgies, torture, and even theivery. Spoiler'd for effect, and I assure you, it is in nearly everyone's public library:
Spoiler:
The Bible.


The last line describing the book somewhat put it into perspective of the stupidity of censoring books.

Spoiler:
Cool story from the History Channel: The Bible, up until a few centuries ago, was deliberately not translated into vernacular (regional) languages, and remained soley in Latin. In fact, the first person to translate it was burned at the stake, and the copy of the Bible. It was commonly accepted among the Catholic Church that only they should be able to interprate the Bible, and also because of the more unsavory portions.
Spoiler:

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby smw543 » Mon Mar 30, 2009 1:12 am UTC

Internetmeme wrote:Mein Kampf
fix'd

Unfortunately, that argument usually doesn't get through because "those gay gang rape scenes are just another means of conveying the message of His eternal love."

Mo' like His internal love, amirite? 8)
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Internetmeme » Mon Mar 30, 2009 8:43 pm UTC

Anyone that wants to know who hasn't read it, the gay gang rape scenes are from that one part about Lot in the city of Sodam. Apparently we get the name sodomy from the city. The ENTIRE city was full of homosexuals. Seriously. God asked Lot to find one straight male in the city and Lot found none. It was THAT bad.
Spoiler:

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Nunkey » Wed Apr 01, 2009 12:05 pm UTC

Slaughterhouse Five.
Fareinheit.. 451 I think? Heinlein.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Julien » Wed Apr 01, 2009 12:42 pm UTC

You should definitely chose Lolita.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Bluggo » Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:02 pm UTC

Anyone that wants to know who hasn't read it, the gay gang rape scenes are from that one part about Lot in the city of Sodam. Apparently we get the name sodomy from the city. The ENTIRE city was full of homosexuals. Seriously. God asked Lot to find one straight male in the city and Lot found none. It was THAT bad.
Wait, so Lot was gay too? :mrgreen:

Not to nitpick too much, but it was Abraham, not Lot, who asked God to save Sodom, and managed to convince Him not to destroy the city if there were at least ten good (not specifically straight, good) people in it - actually, he started at fifty, but he was good at bartering.

There were not.

Angels go in, citizens want to rape them, Lot offers the rapists his daughters in exchange for the angels but the rapists are not interested, angels flip out and kill everyone, Lot's family runs away, Lot's wife looks back and gets turned to salt, Lot and his daughters take refuge in a cave and have a lot of sex.

One of the daughters' son becomes the father of the Moabites, and thus one of the ancestors of Ruth, King David and Jesus Christ.

So maybe the moral of the passage was that it is ok to have embarrassing ancestors? :wink:


As for banned book suggestions, Casanova's memoirs are a surprisingly good read.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:03 pm UTC

Internetmeme wrote:Anyone that wants to know who hasn't read it, the gay gang rape scenes are from that one part about Lot in the city of Sodam. Apparently we get the name sodomy from the city. The ENTIRE city was full of homosexuals. Seriously. God asked Lot to find one straight male in the city and Lot found none. It was THAT bad.


Whats wrong with a city of gays?
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Folx » Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:45 pm UTC

Too fashionable to live?
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby the tree » Wed Apr 01, 2009 9:01 pm UTC

No-one's mentioned Of Mice and Men - it was banned because it contained an instance of euthanasia - which is at least a different reason to a lot of the others mentioned. Also, I've heard that in some schools (in the USA - presumably) it has certain words like 'nigger' blacked out. Also, you can read it in a couple of nights - so y'know, for report writing, kind of handy.
smw543 wrote:In that vein: banning books - ever justified?
It's a significant reduction in freedoms in exchange for no gain in any respect - if ideas were physical objects then censorship would be the equivilant of throwing resources down a well. So, no. (that came across as disturbingly utilatarian - I scare myself sometimes)
Kendo_Bunny wrote:Of course, then you can get into the argument over whether every single library must own every single book to prevent censorship...
No you don't, school libaries can obviously only contain a limited amount of books - so obviously they should prioritise the ones most relevent to the kids education.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby steewi » Fri Apr 03, 2009 1:54 am UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
Internetmeme wrote:Anyone that wants to know who hasn't read it, the gay gang rape scenes are from that one part about Lot in the city of Sodam. Apparently we get the name sodomy from the city. The ENTIRE city was full of homosexuals. Seriously. God asked Lot to find one straight male in the city and Lot found none. It was THAT bad.


Whats wrong with a city of gays?


How about a country?

Edited because punctuation is handy.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby the tree » Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:16 am UTC

Would that make a population of no children? That would make for an interesting economy - no spending on primary education, possibly cancelled out by increased spending on clothes and cocktails.

Anyway, Sodom was supposedly full of 'sexually imorral' people (I think, possibly just plain imorral) rather than simply gay people.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby BlackSails » Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:09 pm UTC

the tree wrote:Anyway, Sodom was supposedly full of 'sexually imorral' people (I think, possibly just plain imorral) rather than simply gay people.


Yeah, it wasnt that they were gay. Its that it was a whole city of gay rapists.

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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:52 pm UTC

BlackSails wrote:
the tree wrote:Anyway, Sodom was supposedly full of 'sexually imorral' people (I think, possibly just plain imorral) rather than simply gay people.


Yeah, it wasnt that they were gay. Its that it was a whole city of gay rapists.

Also, hospitality customs and such. They were gay rapists who raped guests.
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Re: Banned Books Project (Help Me Choose One)

Postby Azukius » Sat Apr 04, 2009 12:52 pm UTC

also, Lolita is an incredibly good book. Banned (unsurprsisingly) for a while.
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