February 08, 2009

Publishers, librarians avoid controversy

Educator Debbie Reese has linked to a School Library Journal article on how librarians practice self-censorship to avoid controversy. She notes how this applies to Native subjects:

SLJ Column:  "A Dirty Little Secret"The article also includes a brief mention of a writer who wrote a book about the Trail of Tears. Her publisher asked her to "...tone down her criticism of Andrew Jackson and his treatment of Native Americans..." I don't know the book at all, so can't comment on it one way or another. It is called The Trail of Tears: An American Tragedy, by Tracy Barrett. Rather than change what she wrote, Barrett went with another publisher.

Tone it down? Right! Let's not tell anyone, especially children, that our presidents did terrible things!
(Excerpted from Debbie Reese's American Indians in Children's Literature, 2/5/09.)

Comment:  For more on the subject, see The Best Indian Books.

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