Critically Acclaimed And Banned Books

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Throughout the ages, literary works have been both critically acclaimed and disparaged. Such criticisms have resulted in the banning of controversial books, an approach aimed to remove the book from society all together rather than to address its controversiality. The banning of books stems all the way back to the mid 1600s, and continues through the present day. Society aims to protect its youth through banning controversial literary works, when in reality banning books suppresses a world of knowledge.

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Literary works have been challenged in the name of protecting our youth for a while now, with children’s books being challenged and banned by many school districts. One of these challenged books/series is the Captain Underpants series written by Dav Pilkey. This series follows the adventures of elementary schoolers George and Harold, who hypnotized their school principal into thinking he was the made up superhero Captain Underpants. USA Today has the Captain Underpants series listed as the third most challenged literary work in 2018, stating that parents challenge it due to it, “encouraging disruptive behavior.” However, these books are quite harmless and are the product of one man’s imagination translated into a lighthearted series of adventures. The banning of the Captain Underpants books are suppressive of a harmless, imaginative, and fun series of stories, all in the name of “preventing disruptive behavior.”

While books like the Captain Underpants series are harmless and silly, more realistic books under the historical fiction category have been banned for much more controversial reasons. “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain was recently banned by Friends’ Central High School in Philadelphia due to its consistent use of a racial slur. However, this book accurately depicts life in Missouri in the 1800s, telling the fictional tale of a young white boy, Huckleberry FInn, going on an adventure with his friend, Jim, who happened to be a slave. The unethical treatment of Jim and constant beratement and mistreatment was accurate when it came down to the treatment of African Americans in the South. This book teaches of the struggles of life at that time and how horribly racist Southern Americans were, yet it was banned due to the reason that the language “made students uncomfortable.” Without a realistic story of life in those times, empathy and a true moral understanding of slavery’s cultural impact may be lost with the youth of today, purely out of sheltering them.

Banning literature from the hands of our youth prevents the learning of history, hardships, morals, and life lessons among other things. These banned books are often kept out of the hands of America’s youth citing negative reasons, when in reality that suppression of knowledge suppresses free will and a sense of moral individuality. Banned books are banned for a reason, and it is often because society does not hear what it wants to within these books. Rather than growing from these books in any way whatsoever, the banning of them prevents these stories from ever being heard, and is in fact a form of government censorship, even on a level as small as that of local schools. No positive impact has been found through banning books, thus why the banning of books suppresses knowledge rather than sheltering society’s youth. 

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Critically Acclaimed And Banned Books. (2021, October 26). WritingBros. Retrieved June 25, 2024, from https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/critically-acclaimed-and-banned-books/
“Critically Acclaimed And Banned Books.” WritingBros, 26 Oct. 2021, writingbros.com/essay-examples/critically-acclaimed-and-banned-books/
Critically Acclaimed And Banned Books. [online]. Available at: <https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/critically-acclaimed-and-banned-books/> [Accessed 25 Jun. 2024].
Critically Acclaimed And Banned Books [Internet]. WritingBros. 2021 Oct 26 [cited 2024 Jun 25]. Available from: https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/critically-acclaimed-and-banned-books/
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