This 501 entry is about to go out of print

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This 501 entry is about to go out of print

1Cecrow
Jun 7, 2021, 4:14 pm

Its publisher is discontinuing its publication. See if you can guess which one, and why?

Did you guess it was And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street by Dr. Seuss?

Here's the story why: https://apnews.com/article/dr-seuss-books-racist-images-d8ed18335c03319d72f44359...

2Cecrow
Editado: Maio 29, 2023, 8:45 pm

In related news, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is getting an update.
Augustus Gloop, Charlie's gluttonous antagonist in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which originally was published in 1964, is no longer "enormously fat," just "enormous." In the new edition of Witches, a supernatural female posing as an ordinary woman may be working as a "top scientist or running a business" instead of as a "cashier in a supermarket or typing letters for a businessman."
Fully story here, including criticism of the move by Salman Rushdie: https://www.cbc.ca/news/entertainment/roald-dahl-censorship-allegations-1.675382...

My opinion is that what makes it controversial is not the change itself, but because the author himself cannot be involved in the changes and we do no know whether he would have approved. Changes of this sort are not unusual - look at the update to Mary Poppins which was edited in modern editions to address racist elements, as cited in its entry for 501 Must-Read Books. Peter Pan could be subjected to some of that reworking too, I'd say; I'm sure it's been debated. The alternative to updates, if we want to keep recommending these classics to our children, is substantial footnoting or introductions that call out these elements and put them in context, trusting to the parents to explain them to their children. Some publishers would rather err on the side of appearing not to extend that trust, in order to extend the book's sales.

There's also the question of whether simply deleting a controversial element would be a less controversial move than introducing entirely new politically correct replacement text. Fortunately they did not go the route of ceasing to publish these works altogether as in the first example (not that they would have seriously considered burying the Dahl gold mine.)