Censorship in Schools There has recently been a renewed interest and passion in the issue of censorship. In the realm of the censorship of books in schools alone, several hundred cases have surfaced each year for nearly the past decade. Controversies over which books to include in the high school English curriculum present a clash of values between teachers, school systems, and parents over what is appropriate for and meaningful to students. It is important to strike a balance between English that is meaningful to students by relating to their lives and representing diversity and satisfying worries about the appropriateness of what is read. This burden often falls on teachers. The purpose of this research paper is to discuss censorship in schools and to argue that the censorship of books in the high school English curriculum is limiting and takes away literature that is meaningful to students. How a Book is Censored Brinkley describes a few actions that can lead to the censoring of a book in a school or school system: An expression of concern is simply a question about the material with overtones of disapproval; an oral complaint is an oral challenge to the contents of a work; a written complaint is a formal written challenge to the school about the contents of a work; and a public attack is a public statement challenging the contents of a work that is made outside of the school, usually to the media to gain support for further action (1999). Brinkley also points out an important difference between selection and censorship: Selection is the act of carefully choosing works for an English course that will be age-appropriate, meaningful, and fulfill objectives, while censorship is the act of excluding works that some con... ... middle of paper ... ...nts out that censors often pick out very short passages of a work without taking into account its context in the entire scheme of the novel. Shen, F. (2002 September 24). Off the shelf; Who should decide what books you read? The Washington Post, pp.2. Retrieved December 2, 2002 from Lexis-Nexis/Academic database. This article addresses some of the reasons that censors attempt to remove books from the curriculum: Many censors feel that works are not age appropriate for students. Staff, Wire Reports. (2002 October 3). Book banning spans the globe. The Houston Chronicle, pp.C14. Retrieved December 2, 2002 from Lexis-Nexis/Academic database. This article emphasizes the point that censors go too far when they attempt to not only ban a book for their own children but want to remove it altogether from a school library, so that other students cannot read it.
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Books are banned for many reasons but more times than not it is because of the sensitive information found within the novel that agitates the reader. As long as people have been able to develop their own opinions, others have sought to prevent them from sharing. At some point in time, every idea has ultimately become objectionable to someone. The most frequently challenged and most visible targets of such objection are the very books found in classrooms and public libraries. These controversial novels teach lessons that sometimes can be very sensitive to some but there is much more to challenged books than a controversial topic. What lies within these pages is a wealth of knowledge, such as new perspectives for readers, twisting plots, and expressions that are found nowhere else. For example, To Kill A Mockingbird, contains references to rape, racial content, and profanity that have caused many to challenge the novel in the first place. The book was banned from countless
According to “Freedom of Speech” by Gerald Leinwand, Abraham Lincoln once asked, “Must a government, of necessity, be too strong for the liberties of its people, or too weak to maintain its own existence (7)?” This question is particularly appropriate when considering what is perhaps the most sacred of all our Constitutionally guaranteed rights, freedom of expression. Lincoln knew well the potential dangers of expression, having steered the Union through the bitterly divisive Civil War, but he held the Constitution dear enough to protect its promises whenever possible (8).
Walt Whitman once said, “The dirtiest book of all is the expurgated book.” Between the years 2000 and 2009 a total of 3200 books were challenged in school libraries in an attempt to expurgate, or censor, the content in books provided to students. Today the trend of censorship continues as popular novels such as The Hunger Games, The Fault in Our Stars, and Captain Underpants are censored from schools across the nation (Challenges by Reason).Censorship in regards to literature refers to the examination and suppressing of a book because of objectionable material. The process of censorship in school libraries often begins with an outspoken parent, teacher, student, or administrator and ends in the banning or abridgement of a novel deemed inadmissible. Censorship is protecting many students from controversial, immoral, and potentially unsuitable content; however, this is not always the case. Students, parents, teachers, and administrators with different backgrounds, beliefs, and morals are not creating a library pleasing to everyone because of the variety of opinion. Censorship in school is not justifiable, because it restricts discussion and knowledge of new, controversial, and necessary ideas, allows a handful of people to make decisions for a larger group based on opinion, and undermines democratic ideals.
...movements for social change were guided by influential figures that drew attention and support from throughout the nation. The African American, anti-war, and gay movements were all prime examples of how specific leaders who advocate for change are vital and beneficial to the cause. President Obama is a current example of how a major figure can actively support an effort, as he did by announcing that he supported gay marriage in 2012. As the first ever-sitting president to proclaim this, Obama symbolized advancement in the movement of gay rights (CNN.com, “Obama announces he supports gay-marriage”, 2012). President Obama is also signed an Executive Order recently to prevent workplace discrimination and by doing so, Obama is expressing that he is committed to empowering woman in the workplace (Whitehouse.gov, “Taking Action in Honor of Equal Pay Day”, 4/8/14).
The American Association of School Administrators (AASA) defines censorship as: “The removal, suppression, or restricted circulation of literary, artistic, or educational materials… of images, ideas, and information…on the grounds that these are morally or otherwise objectionable in light of standards applied by the censor” (Miner 1998). In schools there are three types of censorship, one type is a “parent who doesn’t want their child to read a particular book. Another is a parent, teacher, administrator, or school board member who argues that no one in the class, or school should read the book in dispute. Lastly, there is censorship that involves someone who is part of an organized campaign, whether of a local or national group, and who goes in ready for a fight and wants to make a broader political point” (Miner 1998). Although there are many others ways that a piece of literature could get censored, most censored works are asked to be removed from classrooms and school libraries.
In the article censorship: a personal view by Judy bulme she discusses and touches on censorship in literature in children and young adolescence books. Now in article there are a lot of possible exigencies listed threw out the article one of the main exigencies is that Judy bulme has personal experience with censorship as a little girl, with that personal account she has familiarity that compels and gives her credibility to write this article. With exigencie their also comes a purpose bulme’s purpose in the article is trying to convince parents that you should not coddle a young teen or an adolescent from literature that may not be suitable for them, but let their mind wonder and explain it after they read it. Also she communicates that censorship on books are not right because it’s unconstitutional violating the first amendment freedom of press. The audience she speaks to in article is the group of parents that are like middle age and older that have one track minds, and have to young teens and adolescent ages between 12-9 years old that are hesitant to let their children to read edgy books, teens who were her age and, have or experience the same thing she went thought as a kid, teachers and facility that believe in her cause that have lost their job over edgy books that were not age appropriate to their students. The context that you have to consider in the time of Judy bulme article is there is are a lot of issues going on the America culture that censorship of government felt need be. For inesxctie like the cold war was going on and nobody knew if another war was going to break out at any time. So any material that seemed edgy or conserverial it was going to be censored or restricted by the censors to the minors. Then th...
Community policing has emerged since the 1970s as an increasingly important strategy for controlling and preventing crime and enhancing community safety. It is both a philosophy and an organizational strategy that allows the police and the community to work closely together in creative ways to solve the problems of crime, drugs, fear of crime, physical and social disorder, neighborhood decay, and the overall quality of life in the community. Community policing is difficult to define. Although it does not have a single definition, there are many elements of community policing.
The common image that comes to mind on the topic of censorship is that of book burning. Dating back to ancient times, the easiest way to deal with unwanted writings has been to get rid of them, usually by heaping them into a blazing pyre. In his most famous science fiction novel, Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury warns of a futuristic society where all literature is destroyed under a kerosene flame and the citizens' freedoms are kept in check by the lack of written information. In fear of this kind of totalitarianism, many bibliophiles have fought against all manners of censorship, wielding the first amendment and the rights recognized by our fore-fathers. But with the technological advances of this the last decade of the twentieth century and the up welling of a new informational medium comes a new twist to the struggle for freedom of expression.
To do this, it is important to educate them about the world around them. One way to accomplish this with the inclusion of banned books is to create a class that’s curriculum is based solely on banned and challenged books. Teaching banned books offers a realistic approach to how the world exists. “Banned Books: A Study of Censorship” by Jennifer Rossuck is a perfect example of how to create a class based around banned books. Rossuck plainly lays out her lesson plan, and explains how each banned book is learned and overall beneficial. Rossuck’s first unit is based on Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit
Simmons, John S., and Eliza T. Dresang. School Censorship in the 21st Century: a Guide for Teachers and School Library Media Specialists. Newark, DE: International Reading Association, 2001. Print.
The most debatable and controversial form of censorship today is the banning of books in school libraries. Banning books that educate students is wrong and selfish. Censorship of books in school libraries is neither uncommon nor an issue of the past. Books with artistic and cultural worth are still challenged constantly by those who want to control what others read. The roots of bigotry and illiteracy that fuel efforts to censor books and free expression are unacceptable and unconditional. Censoring school books in libraries can often lead to censorship of our basic freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment. In some cases, a minority ends up dictating the majority in censorship cases. To be told what is permissible reading material and what is not is a direct violation of the First Amendment of the Constitution.
Censorship has been a factor in the lives of humans since long ago in the times of the ancients, however, its prominence increased during the Middle Ages when literature became more common. Take censorship of books, for example, which has been relevant since the time after the persecution of the church, when it banned books about and/or including superstitions or opposition towards them, such as the condemnation of Thalia by Arius, a novel which portrayed “a literal, rationalist approach to the New Testament texts” (http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/589822/Thalia), when “The First Ecumenical Council of Nicæa (325) condemned, not only Arius personally, but also his book... …The Emperor Constantine commanded that the writings of Arius and his friends should be burned and that concealing them was a capital crime, punishable by death.” (Rick Russell Former editor of AB Bookman's Weekly.) We look back on this as monstrous and wretched to deny someone their opinions and hide away the history from the public simply because it was in the favor of any particular group or sect. However, when we use censorship as a way for parents and teachers of children to regulate the reading material that we allow them to associate with, it’s suddenly justified and correct. Those censoring the books obviously think so. They hold the belief that they are protecting their youth from violence, harsh language, and crude humor. Parents and teachers around the nation censor The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain for similar reasons, but they continue to overlook the bigger picture. This title teaches the history of our nation, important life lessons, and the responsibilities of maturity and of growing up.
A Neighborhood Watch program consists of community crime prevention efforts involving local residents organizing and sharing information about crime and other nefarious activity in their immediate area. The essence of Neighborhood Watch is crime prevention through education and use of common sense. In cooperation with local law enforcement, citizens are taught how to properly identify and report suspicious activity or criminal offending in their neighborhoods. Watch groups primarily focus on observation and awareness as the main crime prevention strategies. These tactics can be as simple as having neighborhood residents keep vigilance on neighbors’ property to as complex as organizing active citizen patrol groups.