Huckleberry finn to be censored

Discussion in 'Soap Box' started by Kaos General, Jan 14, 2011.

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  1. Kaos General

    Kaos General Well-Known Member

  2. Issaccs

    Issaccs Well-Known Member

    I see the sense in removing it too teach to younger generations, but then I doubt anyone under ten would be reading this and that those who do read should be intelligent enough to realise the difference between what is acceptable today and what was acceptable hundreds of years ago.

    I guess its just a sign of how terrified we are of racist, yesterday I was trying to explain which flat a friend of mine lives in going through all this rigmarole and finally only settling on "The black dude from Gaelic football lives their". why the fuck is it that the easiest thing to say makes you the most nervous.
     
  3. jota1

    jota1 Well-Known Member

    The world is going nuts.
    The inconsistency of censoring the great classics in the name of freedom and sensibility only proves that the human race is in decline.


    (mediocrity is in charge)
     
  4. Prinnctopher's Belt

    Prinnctopher's Belt Antiquities Friend SF Supporter

    Censors for freedom!

    :irony:
     
  5. peacelovingguy

    peacelovingguy Well-Known Member

    So funny really. We can watch people getting their limbs sawn off in a cinema but we get all queasy over a few words.
     
  6. PollyAnna

    PollyAnna Account Closed

    So what book is being censored next?
     
  7. Bob26003

    Bob26003 Well-Known Member

    First off, nobody is talking about censoring it. The original will always be available. The debate is about whether or not with its constant use of he N word it should or should not be on school required reading lists and whether it is hurtful to Black students and so on...........

    Mark Twain was against prejudice. NAACP members, Black Scholars and various other pro Civil Rights forces are split on the issue. Some think its constant use of the N word is offensive to Black kids and will hurt their self esteem and having on required reading lists is essentially shoving the offensive and hurtul word down their throats, thus the edited version may have a use. Some say it is important that teachers explain the context and so forth. Some simply suggest taking of required reading lists and not editing it all.

    In my opinion It is important not to censor history or art so we have an accurate view of what it really was like. For instance, conservatives in Texas are trying to rename the slave trade into the north atlantic trade and falsely say that many Black folk fought enthusiastically for the confederate traitors. They want to put this in textbooks!! Now that is sick



    But most importantly we should know how Twain himself thought about the issues of civil rights.

    Im sure reactionary conservative racists will use this as an excuse to attack civil rights advocates and civil rights in general. Yet Twain himself was a civil rights activist! But you know, that's above their heads.

    **********************

    Mark Twain: Civil Rights

    Twain was an adamant supporter of abolition and emancipation, even going so far to say “Lincoln's Proclamation ... not only set the black slaves free, but set the white man free also.”[63] He argued that non-whites did not receive justice in the United States, once saying “I have seen Chinamen abused and maltreated in all the mean, cowardly ways possible to the invention of a degraded nature....but I never saw a Chinaman righted in a court of justice for wrongs thus done to him.”[64] He paid for at least one black person to attend Yale University Law School and for another black person to attend a southern university to become a minister.[65]

    Mark Twain was a staunch supporter of women's rights and an active campaigner for women's suffrage. His "Votes for Women" speech, in which he pressed for the granting of voting rights to women, is considered one of the most famous in history.[66]

    Helen Keller benefited from Twain's support, as she pursued her college education and publishing, despite her disabilities and financial limitations.

    Twain's liberal views on race were not shown in his early sketches of Native Americans. Of them, Twain wrote in 1870:
    His heart is a cesspool of falsehood, of treachery, and of low and devilish instincts. With him, gratitude is an unknown emotion; and when one does him a kindness, it is safest to keep the face toward him, lest the reward be an arrow in the back. To accept of a favor from him is to assume a debt which you can never repay to his satisfaction, though you bankrupt yourself trying. The scum of the earth![67]


    As counterpoint, Twain's essay on "The Literary Offenses of Fenimore Cooper" offers a much kinder view of Indians.[45] "No, other Indians would have noticed these things, but Cooper's Indians never notice anything. Cooper thinks they are marvelous creatures for noticing, but he was almost always in error about his Indians. There was seldom a sane one among them".[68] In his later travelogue Following the Equator (1897), Twain observes that in colonized lands all over the world, "savages" have always been wronged by "whites" in the most merciless ways, such as "robbery, humiliation, and slow, slow murder, through poverty and the white man's whiskey"; his conclusion is that "there are many humorous things in this world; among them the white man's notion that he is less savage than the other savages".[69]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Twain#Civil_Rights
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 15, 2011
  8. Lovecraft

    Lovecraft Well-Known Member

    It's how people in the setting of Huck Finn spoke.

    Case closed.
     
  9. jota1

    jota1 Well-Known Member

    Im sorry bob but you and i have a different view of what censorship is. Any modification/adulteration to the authors original text, and especially in this context, is censorship.

    This is how you erode free speech, you make everybody feel guilty about everything to the point where everyone is afraid to say anything.
     
  10. Bob26003

    Bob26003 Well-Known Member

    No No No.......... your twisting man. So you believe in FORCING offensive content down ppls throats?

    This is about whether or not kids should FORCED (ie required reading lists) to read a book that says the N word over two hundred times.

    No one is talking about censoring the book.

    I mean you tell me. Is it right to make a Black child read a book that he or she may find very deeply offensive that says the N word over two hundred times if it hurts their feelings>?

    FORCING a minority student to read a book that they find demeaning and deeply offensive in its language is like FORCING a Christian to watch porn or read a satanic bible. And that is not right dude.

    It is not right to FORCE someone to take part in something that is deeply offensive or hurtful to them.

    etc etc.................. its just inconsiderate and mean.

    Why do you insist on shoving it down their throats?

    Nobody is saying you cant read it: Its just whether or not it should be FORCED
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 15, 2011
  11. Issaccs

    Issaccs Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't give a flying fuck if you made my kid do that so, yeah, he can learn a little more about the world.
     
  12. Lovecraft

    Lovecraft Well-Known Member

    Should we not teach children about genocide because a lot of Cambodian families remember the Khmer Rouge or there's a Jewish family with a few missing branches from the holocaust? No, because those things DID HAPPEN. We didn't whitewash that out of Anne Franks diary yet so let's leave Huck Finn alone.
     
  13. Bob26003

    Bob26003 Well-Known Member

    I agree Lovecraft. But giving that this book uses the derogatory term over two hundred times, this is rubbing their noses in it.

    Its like saying " See this is the way you are thought of, we really do think of you as a N*&&( and you can never escape that, and even if you want to rise above it and move on, sorry we insist on dragging you back through it)

    Would you force a Jewish child to read nazi anti Jew propaganda?

    I agree we should teach the whole history. But this is more than teaching them about it, this is rubbing their nose in it.

    So I dunno. Maybe we should ask some Black folks how they feel about it eh?

    Cause after all, we are white, so this is really not our issue. Cause after all, what do we care about the N word right? What do we care if it is degrading to a Black kid cause we are not Black right? This is the attitude we want to avoid. We are just speculating. We are yapping about something we know nothing about.

    But Let me ask you this: Does the opinions of Black folks on the issue matter to you?

    If a Black child said to you "please dont make me read this, I would happy to read something else, its just that this makes me feel sub human and like I dont deserve to live and will always just be a N*&&^"

    Would you still force him to read it?

    and Isaacs, what if your child said that to you?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 16, 2011
  14. Issaccs

    Issaccs Well-Known Member

    Said what, the N word?
    I'd educate him on why that shits not apropriate, like a responsible parent.
     
  15. Youth

    Youth Active Member

    "Maybe we should ask some Black folks how they feel about it eh?"

    I am biracial (Black/White/Arab) and I didn't read required books in High School at all, because they seemed ignorant to me. You know that book To Kill a Mockingbird? That was one of the first books they gave us in high school. It was offensive to me just by saying such an offensive word. Huckleberry Finn is a lot worse than that book.
    Now, I'm in college and having to sit in a classroom with all white students and watch a Civil Rights movie is just awkward, because they clearly do not understand it on the level that I do.
    I say that the book shouldn't be required at all. In the all-white schools they can read it, but young blacks do not want to see n*****, n*****, plastered all over a book and being passed off as an art. It's the equivalent of a Native American in a film class having to watch one of those old time Westerns where the Cowboys are the "good guys" and the "bad guys" are the Native Americans. It may be entertaining to watch for the majority population, but it's just tasteless and ignorant to make students have to endure it in order to pass classes.
     
  16. pit

    pit Well-Known Member

    Blacks call each other ******s anyway, so I see no harm in them reading Huck Finn, all original syntax intact.

    :Leiaha:
     
  17. Lovecraft

    Lovecraft Well-Known Member

    Is it rubbing it the noses of Jews to give them the diary of Anne Franks? Is it rubbing it into the nose of the Tutsis when we tell kids about the Rwandan genocide? No, it's saying 'This happened, don't let it happen again kids.'

    No, it's saying "This is history. I can't change it, I can just tell you and you should know history so here you go kid. Be happy things are getting better."

    I've been in a history class where we learned about the systemic racism of the 1900 immigration system wherein 'brown' was a disqualification for admission. After the class none of our black kids or Indian kids or Asian kids were offended, they recognized that's what things were and they're different now.
    What's the difference between showing them and rubbing their nose it, hmm?

    I live in downtown Toronto. Ask UNESCO, that means I'm in the worlds most multicultural area. I regularly see people that aren't white, in fact me and others of European decent are probably in the minority in many neighborhoods. I went to a school with 40% Chinese kids and I heard no complaints out of them when we learned about how Canada put a head tax on the Chinese and basically indentured them into working on the railroad for long hours in poor and dangerous conditions, nor did I feel offended when I learned about how some of my family, as United Empire Loyalists, were treated very nastily by Americans on the way out.

    Only so much as the whole bunch of other races or groups that have some form of abuse against their people in the history books.

    I would tell that kid that it's a book representing the past and that racial tensions are on the mend and the kid should be happy they are and if he's so concerned about the status of black people he should become a civil rights activist and fight anything racist.
     
  18. Kaos General

    Kaos General Well-Known Member

    Im sorry but what? Who is forcing who? Huckleberry Finn in the UK is only taught to kids over the age of 11 if at all. Even then they have the choice to speak up if its deemed as offensive so forcing? If they was teaching Mein Kampf in schools then ifd have a problem but Mark Twain is someone that should be studied at school so i dont really get what the problem is. So they use the N word over and over again, your point being what exactly? Its how the people at the time spoke, its history, deal with it. Whatever happened to freedom of speech?

    Oh and one thing that really really bugging me with your posts, stop quoting wikipedia for sanity sake. I can go on wikipedia and edit a page and say im god if i so wished
     
  19. Crue-K

    Crue-K Well-Known Member

    I think it is a real shame for a piece of historical literature to be censored, regardless of whether it is 100 years old or 2000 years old. This modern publisher is certainly doing the story a diservice. However, if the story is to be retold through a different medium such as film, then it is right for the language to be changed for 'modern' readers. If anyone finds offense to certain language or political ideals, then they don't need to read it, I can't see any school in the UK forcing pupils to read such a book as thet are all too politically correct nowadays. It really shouldn't make a difference how repulsive a piece of literature is, it needs to be preserved for future generations.
     
  20. SuperJerk

    SuperJerk Account Closed

    This is horrible. Huckleberry Finn is a classic. I doubt kids even read the book in the first place.
     
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