‘Whitewashing’ Huck Finn By Getting Rid Of The ‘Niggers’

January 6, 2011 at 5:55 pm 1 comment

Sarcastic (in fact it’s down right “dark humor”) but based on reality:
http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/publisher-news/article/45645-upcoming-newsouth-huck-finn-eliminates-the-n-word.html

http://articles.latimes.com/2009/jan/19/nation/na-classics19

Usually great works of art and literature are meant to be read in the context of their setting. But thanks to the American public education system, children no longer understand historical context, so it falls to modern day fence painters to ‘whitewash’ history, to the benefit of us all. Auburn University Prof. Alan Gribben is one of those heroes, and he has called for the classic Mark Twain novel The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn to be updated and modernized. Why?

“After a number of talks, I was sought out by local teachers, and to a person they said we would love to teach this novel, and Huckleberry Finn, but we feel we can’t do it anymore. In the new classroom, it’s really not acceptable.”

Well apparently the book just has too many ‘nigger(s)’ in it. In fact there are over 219 of them, and local teachers and the general public just do not want them there. Prof. Alan Gribben also has issues with the ‘Injun(s)’ and ‘half-breed(s)’.

John Foley (a Portland high school teacher) explains further, “It’s just my experience teaching, especially ‘Huck Finn.’ Every year, it seems to be a tougher sell to the kids. I have a lot of passion for ‘Huck Finn,’ and my enthusiasm usually carries the book. But I have kids come up to me, very smart kids, who say, ‘Mr. Foley, I hate this book.'”

Foley also goes on to complain about To Kill a Mockingbird and the black character Tom Robinson, “but again, he’s uneducated, inarticulate.” Thankfully the new edition will fix this problem (In Huck Finn at least) by changing every ‘nigger’ into a ‘slave.’

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Entry filed under: Evil.

Journalism Is Dead The Political Narrative

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. phil  |  August 12, 2011 at 1:16 am

    ludicrous and ignorant attitude by Foley and anyone who agrees with him. you can’t and definitely shouldn’t change the text of a book, especially a classic. it is a record of the times. People at the time the book is set used the word ‘nigger’. If he was a REAL teacher he wouldn’t find it “tougher” he’d find in it an ideal platform for discussion and education. This man is a small minded bigot. There are many books by many authors that can be construed as expressing ‘unacceptable’ political and racial ideas because of the time they were written in. Shall we obliterate them all and wipe out our literary past? NO! they aren’t just literature they are historical documents, No one has ANY right to change a word in them.

    Reply

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