aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

"Would it be okay if we blacked out four paragraphs?"

I know Diana Abu-jaber, who lives in Portland.

An Oregonian article told how she "recently got an e-mail from a teacher who told Diana that "Crescent" had been banned by her principal.

"I am a high school English teacher in a conservative Texas community," the teacher wrote. A number of her students are "second-generation American students who understand what it is to feel separated from the culture of their parents." Also, "the novel provides a view of Arabs and Arab Americans as something more complex than the two-dimensional and consistently negative view they receive from most media, particularly in Texas."

Her classes had covered the first seven chapters of the novel, the teacher wrote, when the parents of three students (out of 100) objected to the book because of four paragraphs that describe lovemaking. The principal immediately banned the book.

But after the teacher and other parents protested, he offered a compromise. "If we obtain your permission to black out the offending paragraphs in school-purchased copies of the book, we are allowed to include the book in our . . . curriculum."

What do you think? Her book was written for adults, not kids. Here is her response, as well as the offending paragraphs.

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