The Absolutely True Story of a Book Banning

Sometimes, book banning is as simple as:

  1. Parent complains to school board about book (offending excerpts in hand).
  2. School board member agrees book is “inappropriate.”
  3. Good-bye, good literature.

The Crook County School Board in Prineville, Oregon, did just that with nationally-renowned author Sherman Alexie’s National Book Award-winning young adult novel, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.  The book was assigned for ninth grade English classes.  Now, it’s banned.

The Bend Bulletin covered the story and quoted Sherman Alexie:

Everything in the book is what every kid in that school is dealing with on a daily basis, whether it’s masturbation or racism or sexism or the complications of being human. … To pretend that kids aren’t dealing with this on an hour-by-hour basis is a form of denial. … The book is incredibly positive about the world we live in, and people from vastly different politics and groups end up being friends. … If they read the book, it’s a celebration of the values of what they (parents who oppose the book) hold dear.

More Sherman Alexie on the The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian.


About Blog of the National Coalition Against Censorship

Blogging Censorship is where National Coalition Against Censorship staff weigh in on the censorship issues on their minds.
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One Response to The Absolutely True Story of a Book Banning

  1. maria says:

    Just wanted to give a thanks for this blog, and mention how amazed I am at how many of these issues deal with public schools and young people.

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