Rachel

Rachel

Contributing writer for The Artifice.

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    Society's Reaction to Controversial Works of Literature

    Many works of literary merit have been placed on a ban list and are forbidden to be taught in some schools. Chief among these books is "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" for it’s controversial topics concerning race and censorship. Although the book isn’t inherently racist, offense has been taken to it and its casual use of "the n-word." Despite the controversy surrounding it, though, it is still considered a great piece of American Literature. How does society react when it is presented with controversy (specifically in a school setting) such as this, and how do these reactions affect the value of the work as a whole? Would the meaning of the work be diminished if this conflict didn’t exist? Use the answers to analyze whether Huckleberry Finn should be taught in school or permanently banned from our education system.

    • Huckleberry Finn is an interesting choice because it is no longer controversial for the same reasons it was when it was published. It might also be interesting to briefly examine Twain's intentions for the story before delving into delving into the controversy and interpretations surrounding it. – MichelleAjodah 5 years ago
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    • Many countries have banned book lists. Middle Eastern countries in particular have some really interesting ideas as to what constitutes controversy. Maybe do a comparison on what is controversial in the U.S. and Europe in comparison to other parts on the world? – jakedook 5 years ago
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    • Just imagine the book's success had it not used the n-word. Just look at Agatha Christie's book "And Then There Were None." Before it's name was censored it was called "Ten Little N***ers," but most people don't know that and give the story acclaim anyways. It's not that the author's were inherently racist, it was just a term that was socially acceptable/used in their time, the problem lies in the sensitivities of people in our time and their inability to understand that. – Slaidey 5 years ago
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    • It takes the first amendment away to say any book that has a controversial topic in it. Children shouldn't have to be placed in a situation were they have to think about controversial topics. But that is a perfect world.-camilliamaye – CamilliaMaye 5 years ago
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    • Political correctness is a curse wearing the mask of a blessing. The rawness of Twain's novel discusses the inconvenient reality of society. This book was on the ban list when I was in school but our teacher placed it on the syllabus to be read regardless. Was she wrong? I don't think so. Aware? Definitely. – SuzetteA 5 years ago
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    • @SuzetteA: Yes, oh, yes. To the original poster, it would definitely be worth exploring what constitutes controversy in different cultures, settings, or genres. For example, what we think is appropriate for children is vastly different from what we think is appropriate for adults. A lot of the time, I think a double standard exists. – Stephanie M. 4 years ago
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    Latest Comments

    Rachel

    Stop motion is great, not only because of the effects and stories, but because of the hours of work behind them. It’s clear that those who work in Stop Motion, do so because that’s what they love. Just the thought of all those hours making everything perfect, and the care that goes into every scene and movement and expression baffles me. It’s refreshing to know that these people- the people who subject themselves to this- are willing to go above and beyond. Of course, Stop Motion and CGI are both great and have their own merits, but combined they keep me at the edge of my seat. Movies like ParaNorman are so outstanding I can’t even begin to fathom that amount of work gone into it. Kudos to those crazy people willing to entertain an audience with Stop Motion productions!

    Understanding the Art of Stop Motion
    Rachel

    Although Marvel and DC are seemingly beating a dead horse with their plethora of recycled characters, I would have to say,”If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
    Our generation, the predominant generation that watches these heroes, is a nostalgic bunch. I’m sure we’ve all seen “You’re a 90’s kid if..” posts on social media, and that’s because that generation grew up in a world where everything changed much too quickly. We crave the things that take us back to our childhood; heroes made the list. The reason recycled heroes works so well is because the intended audience clings to them and, as creature of habit, doesn’t want anything to change. New heroes are often shunned because exactly that: they’re new. They’re not the comfortable beloved heroes of our past; they represent a change, a movement, that’s makes us cringe and search for the solidarity of what we know.
    Of course, new heroes won’t always be shunned. They may be accepted begrudgingly, and eventually allowed into our world, like a new student entering a high school clique. But it stands to know that the beloved heroes of our past will only grow old when we do. Not only is this recycling effective, but demanded by the audience.

    Killing Superheroes: What's Keeping New Superhero Invention?
    Rachel

    It’s surprising, really, how whitewashing in Hollywood has become such a prevalent part of our society that it can be overlooked at times. I, a big fan of Avatar: the last Airbender, didn’t take a second look at the actor’s race in the movie simply because I am always surrounded by the assertion that white is the default race for anything. Although small attempts are being made at fixing this problem, the fact that the appearance of a different racial group in Hollywood is so exciting, only emphasizes how unaccustomed we are to equal representation.

    Whitewashing of Asian Characters in Hollywood Anime/Manga Adaptations