I wonder where I can find a source( a book, an article, or a web...)
that collect people's opinions on whether or not The Grapes Of Wrath should be banned or taught at the high school level?
I tried some sites, like
http://www.banned-books.com/, but it doesn't work. Also, I need both sides' opinions, not just one side to support the ban but also to oppose the ban. Ideally, references about where these opinions come from(journal, newspapaer, book,web...) can be provided too in this source.
Also, Some people asked to ban this book due to certain things. Could you tell me what these things refer to in the book (where are they?):
A. the "vulgar words"
B. book uses the name of God and Jesus in a "vain and profane manner a long with inappropriate sexual references."
C. has all kinds of profanity.
Thank you very much.
5 Answers | Add Yours
I agree that The Grapes of Wrath is a classic. Although there is some profanity, it fits with the characters and the times. "Filthy" is not a word that should be associated with the novel unless it concerns the dust bowl conditions.
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck should definitely be taught on the high school level because the novel captures a hard reality of the American experience. Those who wanted the book banned and burned in 1940 were afraid and believed its message compromised the American political and socio-economic system. The Grapes of Wrath was not about compromise, it was a lesson in self reflection. The novel forces the reader to look into a mirror and have a sense of accountability...as for the vulgarity, Steinbeck uses it to awaken the reader to the greater meaning of the book, unfortunately not everyone 'gets it'.
An excellent source:
Many years ago, my parents objected to the movie, On Golden Pond. Their primary objection was the foul language used by the main character. This language was appropriate to the character and his situation. The same can be said for The Grapes of Wrath. The “vulgarity” and the foul language is not gratuitous. It fits the time, the date, the place, the circumstances of the novels intent.
The book is a classic. It tells the true story of life in the depression era...no frills, no lies. Life is not always hunky-dorey with a happy ending. We do not live in Disney films, and the history of our country (of ANY country) is not always honorable and worthy of praise. However, if we are going to learn from these events and prevent similar ones from happening, we must study them in their truth and entirity. I support teaching these books since, despite the vulgarity of human nature as it is displayed on the pages and the profanity these characters use, they make us think. They make us look ourselves in the face--imperfect as we all are--and confront our demons. Readers are changed after having read truly great literature.
If you go to any respectable academic journal on-line, and type in banned or controversial, you should be able to retrieve articles on both sides of the issue. Also try newspapers that usually have a fair and balanced analysis.
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