C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m

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The Censor’s Dilemma

Censorship of books in Cuba is an interesting phenomenon. When a book is banned, it’s pushed into the black market and the underground economy scoops it up for the populace. Thankfully.

Whenever a book or a film is decried by would-be censors, or actual censors, the object of their derision is made all the more desireable in the minds of many. I have no doubt JK Rowling would have been a success in any case. However, when numerous religious groups tried to have it banned, they unwittingly contributed to the Harry Potter phenomenon.

If your book is made into a movie, your sales will soar. If you can get somebody to declaim it as an offense to decency or whatever their pet cause happens to be, then you’ll get more media promotion than you could possibly pay for.

When I was a kid a local Baptist church held a rally, proud they were going to burn evil Metal records. They identified the music as a threat to the children. The trouble was, mostly the kids didn’t have any of the offensive records (or had them stashed at a friend’s house.) Their solution was to go out and buy a bunch of AC/DC so they could contribute to the liberating bonfire. Bloody brilliant. (A recent study revealed teens who listen to heavy metal are actually more serene and intelligent as a group.)

To the censors: if you don’t want anybody to read or listen to something you don’t like, ssssshhhhhhh. Don’t read it. Don’t talk about it and don’t tell me what to do with my brain. The moment you start railing against it, I’m putting on my coat to head to Chapters. Look at any list of banned books and you’ll find a lot of great literature there.

Rock on.

Filed under: banning books, Rant, ,

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