banned book week. Things can get busy around here, and I'm not able to read everything I would like. I have attempted to read some of the classics over the years. Banned book week was a great incentive for me. Of course I didn't select just one book, but I plan on attempting some in the next few months.
I hope to read them and review them here. Here is a link to why some of the books were banned. Note that Ulysses doesn't have any explanation for being challenged. I do find that process fascinating - why some books were seen as immoral or dangerous that seem rather tame now**. (I'm thinking specifically of D.H. Lawrence).
The first novel I've finished is Their Eyes Were Watching God By Zora Neale Hurston. The dialogue was difficult to get through at times, I think this is a book to read out loud (much like Shakespeare). I do think Janie (the main character) was a feminist character. I can't explain why this book was banned - the only thing I can think of is some of the descriptions of rape near the beginning - the descriptions were not graphic. They were matter of fact - not a central point of the book - merely revealing Janie's past (and that of her family). Her grandmother was a slave - I wouldn't think that would cause the book to be banned. Evidently the novel was sexually explicit.
Books I am attempting:
* The Sun Also Rises, by Ernest Hemingway (burned in Nazi Germany according to the above website. I would not have assumed that given where I'm at in the novel so far. 1933.)
* Ulysses, by James Joyce (wish me luck, I'm attempting this one over the holidays)
* Brideshead Revisited, by Evelyn Waugh
* An American Tragedy, by Theodore Dreiser (Also burned in Nazi Germany and banned due to "low love affairs".)
* Rabbit, Run, by John Updike
**Honestly, it is amazing that some of these books were burned. I wonder if the German language or English language version were burned. And what an interesting thing to look back on, now - almost a badge of honor to have your work burned in Germany. I suspect the authors weren't thrilled by it at the time (I love Kurt Vonnegut Jr.'s description/opinion of censorship...)