Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Get Your Hand Off It

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  • Idiot Savant,

    Are books ever removed from the banned list? Or are censorship decisions made in the 1960's allowed to stand in the very, very different Century of the Earwig?

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1625 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Are books ever removed from the banned list?

    People can apply to have decisions reviewed, which is why towards the end of the list some books are appearing multiple times. But unless somebody actively takes an interest in doing that, I believe they just sit there.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4327 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    If, however, anyone knows anything about Why Was He Born So Beautiful and Other Rugby Songs, banned in 1968, I've love to hear it.

    Only that in bygone days "rugby songs" was shorthand for very rude and ribald ditties sung amongst men. And not songs about rugby.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18512 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    Why Was He Born So Beautiful and Other Rugby Songs

    I was going to say that some of the songs might have been racist but it seems the songs were more disturbing than that.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2081 posts Report Reply

  • bronwyn,

    That list of challenged books makes for interesting reading. Some, it's pretty easy to think why some people may object to them. But How To Eat Fried Worms?! Do people really think children are so stupid and/or unevolved that a book will cause them to override basic biological principals such as the idea that if something tastes bad, you're probably not meant to fry it up with your eggs in the morning?

    tamaki makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 86 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I was going to say that some of the songs might have been racist but it seems the songs were more disturbing than that.

    Wow. So you could buy the record, but not the book...

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4327 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    That Wikipedia list is blowing my mind. Deenie? The one about the impossibly attractive teen with scoliosis? What... oh, that's right. Wanking. There's wanking in Deenie.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3623 posts Report Reply

  • Andre,

    Wow! How interesting!
    While the BBC were embracing Dame Edna in 1968 by making a TV show, we were banning Barry Humphries book "Bizarre" How Bizarre indeed.
    How about Muldoon going all anti-marijuana on 29-Sep-78. It must have been a big week!
    They were really going a bit far with Madonna in 1992: R18. Sales to be made in original heat sealed vacuum-packed aluminium foil bag which carries the caution: Warning this book contains adult material and its exterior packaging reflects the controversial and sensitive nature of what is inside (IPT). Information overload anyone? It sounds like a WMD.
    Star Distributors published 24 of them from 1997 - 2002. It sounds like their demise was very much deserved...
    I wouldn't celebrate any of these works but respect that the burning of books a la Nazi Germany is wrong. Would American Psycho negatively affect under 18 year-olds in book form? Many have now seen it on DVD - isn't that worse?

    New Zealand • Since May 2009 • 269 posts Report Reply

  • Hadyn Green,

    Wow. So you could buy the record, but not the book...

    Heck you can download the MP3 of I Like The Girls Who Say They Will

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2081 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    That Wikipedia list is blowing my mind. Deenie? The one about the impossibly attractive teen with scoliosis? What... oh, that's right. Wanking. There's wanking in Deenie.

    Oh Danielle, Judy Blume is the most dangerous author of them all.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4327 posts Report Reply

  • bronwyn,

    Would American Psycho negatively affect under 18 year-olds in book form? Many have now seen it on DVD - isn't that worse?

    (Oh no, I'm about to be one of those insufferable people that goes on about the book vs. the movie - please excuse me for a moment.)

    Actually, the book is far far far more graphic than the film. It's pretty hard to read a book whilst peeking out from behind your hands, but that's what I had to do to get through it.

    tamaki makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 86 posts Report Reply

  • Idiot Savant,

    But How To Eat Fried Worms?! Do people really think children are so stupid and/or unevolved that a book will cause them to override basic biological principals such as the idea that if something tastes bad, you're probably not meant to fry it up with your eggs in the morning?

    I read that as a child. Clearly, its the reason I am the way I am today.

    Palmerston North • Since Nov 2006 • 1625 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    Well, banning "Secrets of Methamphetamine Manufacture" really worked, didn't it?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1039 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    I had no idea that Justine and Juliette were still officially banned in NZ! I wonder whether that would extend to versions such as Guido Crepax's graphic novels.

    And on the (formerly) banned books theme, I just started reading "Lady Chatterly's Lover" for the first time yesterday. I'm waiting for Mellors to turn up so we can get something less coy than "love connexion" and "crisis".

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1039 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    I can see the reason to ban video and still photography that might have involved actual abuse or criminality. But plain text like a book would (almost) always have no such involvement (I can think of no case where someone diarised their crimes and published the result?).

    Most developed nations have given up censoring text (either de facto or through a law change), I think NZ is one of the last nations to enthusiastically ban books.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4359 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Well, banning "Secrets of Methamphetamine Manufacture" really worked, didn't it?

    In 2002, I wrote this:

    Matt Talbot was kind enough to send me through a couple of startling URLs from Amazon.com. This one for Uncle Fester's Secrets of Methamphetamine Manufacture and this one for Jack B. Nimble's The Construction and Operation of Clandestine Drug Laboratories. Both are listed as popular in - you guessed it - New Zealand. They rank 8001 and 99,454 on Amazon's overall sales chart - and numbers 19 and 9 respectively in sales to New Zealand! Good grief …

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18512 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Only that in bygone days "rugby songs" was shorthand for very rude and ribald ditties sung amongst men. And not songs about rugby.

    Like this one?

    http://www.youtube.com/v/srqEcHUzuys&hl=en&fs=1&

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 4359 posts Report Reply

  • philipmatthews,

    David Hamilton's Holiday Snapshots -- wonder if Roman Polanski has a copy?

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2007 • 642 posts Report Reply

  • Zippy Gonzales,

    Cheers for the list of banned books, Emma. Hilarious stuff. I never knew quite how much hatred has been aimed at marijuana. There's a lot of affirmation of bans that show the same stupidity repeats itself.

    And books of limericks! I'd like to see the SST tackle that one. Zero Tolerance on Rhyme!

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 186 posts Report Reply

  • Sharron McKenzie,

    Seriously, Aleister Crowley wrote limericks? Now that is scary. Do demons materialise if you recite them out loud, I wonder?

    Since Sep 2009 • 2 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Seriously, Aleister Crowley wrote limericks? Now that is scary.

    Isn't it? And apparently entirely true, he did. And boy are they... something...

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4327 posts Report Reply

  • Isabel Hitchings,

    Disturbing to see books about birth control, pregnancy and childbirth restricted.

    Christchurch • Since Jul 2007 • 702 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Trying to remember which feminist author it was who reckoned Justine was a prime piece of feminist literature. Naomi Wolf? She made a good case for it, iirc, but I never did get around to reading it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    ....click! The Beauty Myth. I distinctly remember her describing that approaching sex on one's knees was highly symbolic of the extent we made it a near religious experience. I couldn't help but think there are probably more practical reasons than that.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8305 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    And boy are they... something...

    You can see why he was called the Wickedest Man in the World. Truly, truly awful, and that should be enough reason to ban them. Though if bad writing were the trigger for bookburning, then the collected works of Dan Brown would be making a huge contribution towards global warming.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1039 posts Report Reply

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