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Old 09-05-2008, 11:56 PM   #46
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Thanks - I wasn't aware of that particular belief.
Some folks, at least here in the more backwards parts of the US, claim that any fantasy of any sort is evil. It boggles the mind.

btw: In one of the HP books there is a mention that the kids walk by a decorated Christmas tree in Hogwarts, and if I remember correctly religious carols are sung in the dining hall, once.
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Old 09-06-2008, 05:57 AM   #47
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It's no surprise the HP books are full of saucery.
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Old 09-06-2008, 09:51 AM   #48
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By the way miracles are different from magic.

Dale
Different in what way, Dale?
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Old 09-06-2008, 10:59 AM   #49
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Different in what way, Dale?
I think its the spelling mainly HarryT

My opinion on this is that the author chose that word as it is what the character would have said! The 19 year old character would never have said 'twit' so now even though the VAST majority don't have an issue it gets changed and makes the book IMO worse but definitely makes it less of the authors vision.
I do not like censorship and this is what it is, I also feel that adults in general vastly underestimate children, My friends son who is 6 knows the word TWAT and he knows it shoulnt be used, children should be educated through good parenting not locked in a box and 'protected' from real life.

Its one of the reasons IMO that The US and the UK have so many issues with teenagers swearing and drinking and getting pregnant because they are 'protected' from it by parents, In spain France etc where drinking is done from a young age in a family meal setting they have much less of an issue than in the UK/US where "Drinking is bad! wait until your old enough" Then when they are they go mad.
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Old 09-06-2008, 11:06 AM   #50
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I think its the spelling mainly HarryT
Please read the post of Dale's to which I was replying .
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Old 09-06-2008, 11:12 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by elena View Post
OT
it appears that in English feminine genitalia ended up by becoming insults, while in Italian they mean "cool" and "beautiful"

sexist, but interesting
In English, the words for male genitalia are also insults .... so at least, in English, it's a non-sexist sort of insult system.

I read the article. I can see why the pulled the books for editing, but I disagree with how they edited it. I agree with what was noted before ... leave the text as is, and post a nice big warning on the front of the book.

If I were a parent (which I should most decidedly NEVER be) I would want to have my kids introduced to the fine art of swearing in the correct manner and give them the best ammo with which to fire back. (Nothing will confuse a 10 year old calling you a "twat" faster than hurling back some choice Shakespeare at them.)

And, I do recall all the nonsense the religious right spouted with respect to the "Harry Potter" books. I don't recall them going all nuts about "The Wizard of OZ" or any of the other great books that contain witches and wizards. But then, I tend to view the people who think like that as having braces on their brains.
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Old 09-06-2008, 12:41 PM   #52
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Please read the post of Dale's to which I was replying .
I did.. I was Joking! hence the wink at the end
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Old 09-06-2008, 12:53 PM   #53
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I would rather my grandchildren read books than not read books.

If they read something that is not age appropriate, they will either ask what the word is, prompting a discussion, or just run past it, not comprehending. Too many non-comprehended words, and they move on to something else.

Having said that, if a book is stated to be for 10 year olds, then write such that the character development matches what is age appropriate.

"You're a twat!" screamed Binky.

"You're a twit!" screamed Binky.

Binky's face turned red and he screamed at Bunky, trying to hurt his friend. Bunky shut up and looked down.


The first can be a bit over the range of a ten year old. The second is an attempt to say the same thing with the same words, save one letter. The third shows without verging into language barriers.
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Old 09-06-2008, 01:49 PM   #54
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Given that the book is aimed at 10 year old children, I think this is entirely appropriate, myself. I think that I would have been among the "complainers" if I'd bought it for my 10 year old nephew and seen language like that.
OMFG, are you serious?! Could you imagine hearing your 10 y.o. say that word at dinner? Forks, jaws, and glasses would fall... I think even the dog would probably fall into a shocked stupor! What was he thinking?

In respect to the OP, I would think the same thing; but that was before hearing it's in a Children/Y.A. book. Yikes!

I guess the one thing we also missed about the article was the last line:

"Wilson is one of the 750 authors to have put her name to a petition against age guidance, a publisher initiative to include the ages at which a children's book is aimed on its back cover."

Hmm, we have rating systems for movies, TV shows, video games, and music; I don't think there's any reason not to have one for books. After all, it's simply a warning of what's in the medium and not necessarily infringement upon freedom of speech. Ultimately, it's up to the parent to screen what their children reads/hears/watches and having something to base that decision on cannot hurt.

Last edited by Azayzel; 09-06-2008 at 02:03 PM.
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Old 09-06-2008, 02:18 PM   #55
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I had a conversation with a conservative Christian friend of mine about this yesterday. His opinion was that the HP books were inappropriate for children, because they portray children performing witchcraft. To give him credit, he had read about 1/3 of the first book, at least, rather than forming this opinion based solely on published reviews or whatever. I suggested that it should depend on the definition of witchcraft. The HP world is a fantasy world in which some people are genetically predisposed to be able to perform "magic," but they don't need to go to any supernatural agency to be granted these powers. I think that's rather different than what the Bible (or even typical Christian tradition) prohibits. He acknowledged that this was an interesting point of view that he'd consider. I'll have to ask him what he thinks of the Oz books. (I doubt he's read them. He doesn't read a lot of fiction.)
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Old 09-06-2008, 04:28 PM   #56
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Different in what way, Dale?
Magic is generally a trick, slight of hand or other explainable method while a miracle cannot be explained except via the action of God. The magicians were able to turn a bowl of water red as blood but Moses turned the whole river nile into blood. While the results may seem the same the scope is clearly different. It is kind of like a scientist doing something in a petri dish and then claiming it is the same as what God did to the whole world. People believe what they want to believe.

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Old 09-06-2008, 06:52 PM   #57
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When my elder nephew started swearing, I looked up from my book and politely inquired, "Did you just say f****** h***?"
He looked shamefaced and admitted saying those words.
So I replied that at least he didn't know any of the really bad words, and was (thankfully) a comparative innocent. I then allowed him, slowly, to extract from me the information that the worst swear word in the whole world was "Belgium," and that he was never to use it. Not ever.
The plan worked, and he used nothing else for a while.
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:20 PM   #58
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When my elder nephew started swearing, I looked up from my book and politely inquired, "Did you just say f****** h***?"
He looked shamefaced and admitted saying those words.
So I replied that at least he didn't know any of the really bad words, and was (thankfully) a comparative innocent. I then allowed him, slowly, to extract from me the information that the worst swear word in the whole world was "Belgium," and that he was never to use it. Not ever.
The plan worked, and he used nothing else for a while.
!!!!! oh that's hilarious !!! i'm going to start using "belgium" as a swear word now. i just hope no belgians read this.
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:34 PM   #59
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The question I'm left with on any such attempt to "protect" the kids is exactly what those advocating censorship think will happen if little Johnny does see a bad word in a book (or a pornographic image on a website, for that matter.) The sky will fall? The world will come to an end? The kid will grow up to be a juvenile delinquent or sexual pervert?

When I was a young child, I had a very silly conversation with my mother. She heard me say what she thought was the "F" word (it wasn't), and proceeded through ten minutes of trying to explain why what I said was a bad word and that I shouldn't use it without ever actually saying the word herself. Of course, I had no idea what she was talking about. It wasn't until years later that I recalled the incident, realized what Mom thought I'd said, and started laughing.

I'm a contrarian on stuff like this. Unless you raise your kids in the proverbial barrel and feed them through the bunghole, attempts to control what they see and hear fail as soon as they are out with their friends, whose parents may not have the same standards as you. I have to bite my tongue when I hear a parent piously proclaim "My child never uses that kind of language!" Oh yes she does. She's just smart enough to do it where you can't hear her. I was at her age...

Were I to become a parent, what I would want most is my kids coming to me and asking about stuff like that. I'd be far less concerned with trying to protect them from encountering it, because I don't think that's really possible in practice. (See above about the barrel and the bunghole.)

Kids are like the young of any other species. they don't do what you say: they imitate what they see you do. If Junior has developed a habit Mom and Dad dislike, the first question is where he learned it, and maybe Mom and Dad need to carefully consider their own behavior and which of them he might be imitating.

My job as a parent would be to demonstrate by example the proper way to live their lives and deal with the world. If they see something beyond their age level in a book, on TV, in a film, or on the web, I want them to ask me about it, knowing that I'll give them a straight answer. I don't want them attempting to find out from their friends because they don't think they can come to me, and any real attempt to filter what they come into contact with is likely to give them the idea they can't.

Bottom line? I think the censorship mentioned is ultimately pointless. If the kid doesn't see the word in a book, she'll surely encounter it elsewhere. If she doesn't know what it means, I want her to go to Mom or Dad and ask, and I want Mom and Dad to give a meaningful answer and not get upset at the question. Too much of what I've seen put forth as "protecting the children" seems to be far more motivated by a desire of Mom and Dad to avoid having to deal with questions they aren't comfortable answering.
______
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:43 PM   #60
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I have often wondered how these parents cope with letting their children read the bible.
It only gives rise to questions like:
"Mummy, what is a virgin?" (asked by my 5 year-old daughter at a Nativity play)
"What is a Chief eunuch?
"What did Rahab actually do for a living?"
"What's wrong with spilling seed on the ground?" (Never let a child near Genesis 38. It only causes unwanted questions.)
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