Censored books censor minds

Challenged+books.

Kate MacDonald

Challenged books.

Kate MacDonald, Plaid Truth Staff

Literature is a divine gateway to a new way of thinking. Allowing readers to adapt to and learn from words on a printed page, connecting with characters alike. In schools, students have the privilege of being taught works of classic and modern literature. Although, sensitive material laced throughout these books have ignited a heated debate regarding academic censorship. Parents nation-wide have advocated for the suppression of mature material in schools, wanting “their children to remain children a bit longer and not be exposed to more adult content yet,” as told by english teacher, Mrs. Jennifer Letus. Understandably, a child’s innocence is something that most parents would want to protect, but at what cost? 

The Kite Runner is a book taught to sophomores here at Royal, but its controversial content has caused parents to question the material at hand. “Yes, it deals with rape,” said english teacher Ms. Nicole Malone, “but students connect with that novel more than almost any other novel I teach.” Along with sensitive content, this book has taught students  “topics of friendship, redemption, family, etc.” said Malone.  The Kite Runner is often challenged but when asked about banned books Letus said, “teachers of literature seek to expose their students to stories with rich lessons, powerful themes, and meaningful experiences. [They] must make the choice about whether the sensitive material or adult content of a book takes away from the message or lesson of the book.” With the academic censorship, students would not only be deprived of this raw story, but alterations in the written word would alter students’ perception of the book. Addressing mature content with high school students sounds like a struggle inducing task, but Letus said, “I’ve been teaching for 16 years and have seen nothing but immense maturity and empathy from my students when they are faced with sensitive material in literature.” 

Alas, the debate continues. Most parents question if it is worth exposing our youth to adult rated topics at a young age. While many teachers support the academic journey that more mature literature allows students to endure upon.  Ultimately, discovering a balance between child-like innocence and adult level maturity is a struggle all teenagers have to deal with, and it is up to role superiors, such as parents and teachers, to guide teens along this fine line.

Literature is a divine gateway to a new way of thinking. Allowing readers to adapt to and learn from words on a printed page, connecting with characters alike. In schools, students have the privilege of being taught works of classic and modern literature. Although, sensitive material laced throughout these books have ignited a heated debate regarding academic censorship. Parents nation-wide have advocated for the suppression of mature material in schools, wanting “their children to remain children a bit longer and not be exposed to more adult content yet,” as told by english teacher, Mrs. Jennifer Letus. Understandably, a child’s innocence is something that most parents would want to protect, but at what cost? 

The Kite Runner is a book taught to sophomores here at Royal, but its controversial content has caused parents to question the material at hand. “Yes, it deals with rape,” said english teacher Ms. Nicole Malone, “but students connect with that novel more than almost any other novel I teach.” Along with sensitive content, this book has taught students  “topics of friendship, redemption, family, etc.” said Ms. Malone.  The Kite Runner is often challenged but when asked about banned books Mrs. Letus said, “Tteachers of literature seek to expose their students to stories with rich lessons, powerful themes, and meaningful experiences. [They] must make the choice about whether the sensitive material or adult content of a book takes away from the message or lesson of the book.” With the academic censorship, students would not only be deprived of this raw story, but alterations in the written word would alter students’ perception of the book. Addressing mature content with high school students sounds like a struggle inducing task, but Mrs. Letus said, “I’ve been teaching for 16 years and have seen nothing but immense maturity and empathy from my students when they are faced with sensitive material in literature.” 

Alas the debate continues. Most parents question if it is worth exposing our youth to adult rated topics at a young age. While most(opinion, many?) teachers support the academic journey that more mature literature allows students to endure upon.  Ultimately, discovering a balance between child-like innocence and adult level maturity is a struggle all teenagers have to deal with, and it is up to role superiors, such as parents and teachers, to guide teens along this fine line