Indiana school board to review Toni Morrison’s “Song of Solomon”

As we reported in our latest edition of Censorship News, Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison’s Song of Solomon was recently removed from an Indiana high school’s AP English class on April 28 after a parent and school board members complained about its content.  Two days later, the book was returned to the class when a committee of educators and parents ruled in favor of keeping the book.

Too bad the story doesn’t end there.

The book is again up for review, now by the Franklin Township school board, which will hear an appeal of the committee’s decision at its June 21 meeting, leaving the fate of Song of Solomon in future AP classes uncertain.

In a joint letter, NCAC and the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression write to urge the school to retain the book, saying:

The racial and sexual themes treated in Song of Solomon are essential to the fullness of this rightly renowned novel and are appropriate to the level of material that advanced placement students, most of whom will go on to college, must be able to read and consider.

That Song of Solomon conveys, through poetic and musical language, the sometimes discomfiting truths of life is hardly reason enough to hide it from our nation’s young people. In fact, that may be the very reason it should exist in the classroom.

Stay tuned for more updates following Monday’s meeting.

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Blogging Censorship is where National Coalition Against Censorship staff weigh in on the censorship issues on their minds.
This entry was posted in Teresa Koberstein: Author and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Indiana school board to review Toni Morrison’s “Song of Solomon”

  1. Dana Ellyn says:

    First, let me say a huge “Thank You!” for your wonderful blog. I have been a frequent visitor / reader … especially in the past few months.

    I am a painter (and an avid reader) and I have an exhibit coming up that I thought you’d be interested in hearing about. I have created a collection of paintings all inspired by banned and challenged books. I am exhibiting it at the Martin Luther King Library in Washington DC starting next week (with an opening reception for the public June 28th @6:30pm)

    The entire collection of work in the exhibit is on a dedicated page on my website:
    And, it includes links with brief descriptions of the books and the symbolism in each painting.

    I used your blog as a reference along the way – I enjoyed reading your contributors comments and simply took pleasure in knowing how many people are out there who are interested in this topic of censorship.

    Even though this exhibit hangs next week, it is going to be an ongoing project for me for years and years to come. In fact, I have another solo exhibit planned for November 2011 which will be a whole new set of banned book inspired paintings! VERY exciting.

    If you’re on Facebook, I’ve also created an event for the exhibit.

    If you’re interested, feel free to pass along my website and/or the Facebook event to anyone you know who may be interested. Or, I at least hope that you enjoy viewing my paintings and seeing what the banned books inspired in me 🙂

    My best,

  2. Pingback: Song of Solomon Prevails in Franklin Township! « Blogging Censorship

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