The Case For Inflammatory Literature

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Imagine never accompanying Alice on her wacky adventures in Wonderland, never learning to remain childlike in your perceptions and to stay open-minded. Picture yourself never reading all those books that had been vital in the development of your character. This image may seem difficult to fathom but this is a possibility that is all too likely to become a reality. The censorship of novels could be hindering readers from attaining certain lessons that can be essential in life.

Book banning is unconstitutional. The first amendment states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press”. This translates to meaning people have the right to publish newspapers, magazines, and other printed matter without governmental restriction. So if the first section in our Bill of Rights is relevant at all, it would indicate that the government has no place to tell a person what they may or may not read. But books are still banned, censored, and burned.

Censorship can get out of line. The explanations for censoring books may lead to the banning of other literature. Precisely one third of the titles on the 1998 Modern Library list of the 100 Best Novels of the 20th Century have been removed or threatened with removal from bookstores, libraries and schools at some point. This includes six books that are in the top ten. Classics are being deemed offensive, harmful, or even obscene.

When books are censored you only get one point of view. If a single opinion is pressed it may sway the reader’s personal beliefs. President Eisenhower wrote: "Our librarians serve the precious liberties of our nation: freedom of inquiry, freedom of the spoken and written word, freedom of exchange of ideas." A diversity of fact and opinion is necessary so you can apply what you have learned and make your own judgment.

This is why I disagree with the banning of literature. Censorship is unconstitutional, with an indeterminable end. It segregates opinions and only showcases one idea with no variation. How will this atrocity be brought to a stop? Is a world that mirrors the one of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, where all books are burned because man has decided that knowledge brings pain, before us? The only comprehensible solution to abolish the banning of novels is for you to take a stand. Write a letter to your congressmen concerning your issues with the banning of books. Share with them the lessons you have learned while reading classics that have been challenged or threatened. Do not swallow predigested pap; broaden your horizons with the knowledge which great novels bring us, before those resources are taken from us as well!





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LittleInside said...
May 27, 2012 at 2:19 pm
I really liked this article, and I feel it was very well put together in a classic essay set up. It is true that censorship is often taken too far, but examples of how far it could be taken might have made your point stick a little better.
 
woeismoi replied...
Oct. 5, 2012 at 5:36 am
Thank you so much for reviewing my work, I'm glad you enjoyed it!  I agree with your suggestion, that point didnt seem as strong as the others.  I will take that idea into consideration next time I write an essay similar to this one, thank you again :)
 
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