Anorak News | Books Interrupted. New Rochelle School Damages Books To Protect Students

Books Interrupted. New Rochelle School Damages Books To Protect Students

by | 8th, December 2008

IN America, the Land of the Free, pages from Girl Interrupted, the book of the film, have been ripped out. It’s to keep minds pure.  

Students at New Rochelle School High School are going to find it difficult to complete their next assignment: comparing the film adaptation of “Girl, Interrupted” to the best-selling book. In the book, Kaysen recounts her confinement at a Massachussets mental hospital in the 1960’s.

Pages from the middle of the book have been torn out by the school district after having been deemed “inappropriate” by school officials due to sexual content and strong language. Removed is a scene where the rebellious Lisa (played by Angela Jolie in the movie) encourages Susanna (played by Winona Ryder) to circumvent hospital rules against sexual intercourse by engaging in oral sex instead.

We’d draw a cartoon, but it’s risky:

“The material was of a sexual nature that we deemed inappropriate for teachers to present to their students,” said English Department Chariperson Leslie Altschul, “since the book has other redeeming features, we took the liberty of bowdlerizing.”

“Bowdlerizing is a particularly disturbing form of censorship since it not only suppresses specific content deemed ‘objectionable,’ but also does violence to the work by removing material that the author thought integral,” said Joan Bertin, Executive Director of the National Coalition Against Censorship. “It is a kind of literary fraud perpetrated on an unsuspecting audience.”

Well, yes. Although maybe by now they expect it?


Posted: 8th, December 2008 | In: Reviews Comment (1) | TrackBack | Permalink