alice in wonderland

5 Books you Wont Believe were Banned

Alice in Wonderland (1865)

alice in wonderland

Everyone knows the story of the girl who fell down the rabbit hole, but I wonder how many people know why the book was banned in a province in China.

In the book was banned in the Hunan Province in 1931 because it the audacity to have acting at the same level of intelligence as human beings. The regions censor General was of the opinion that allowing animals not only to speak, but to wear hats was an insult to humans everywhere. He feared that the book would have the disastrous result of leading children to treat humans and animals similarly.

 

Green Eggs and Ham (1960)

green eggs and ham

Who would have thought that a book containing just 50 different words [1] could be so controversial?

The 4th best-selling English children’s book of all time was banned in the People’s Republic of China because, and this is good, because of its portrayal of Marxism. Not only was the author so clever as to hide his insidious message of a socio-political view of socio-economic analysis based on a materialist understanding of historical progress and an analysis of class-relations within humanity and their application in a critique of the growth of capitalism, but to do it all with less than 50 words. Brilliant

The censors did eventually lift the ban almost 30 years later in 1991 after the offensive author known simply as Dr Seuss passed away.

 

Diary of Anne Frank (1947)

Diary of Anne Frank

This one is by far the most disgusting on this list, as the diary of a 13 year old Jewish girl who hid from the Nazis for two years only to be caught and die in a concentration camp was banned in Lebanon for “Portraying  Jews, Israel or Zionism favourably”, and remains banned to this day.

Other stories on the list because of this reason include “Schindlers List” and “Sophie’s Choice”[2]

 

The Da Vinci Code (2003)

the da vinci code

This book remains banned in Lebanon after the Catholic leaders in the country deemed it to be offensive to Christianity due to the inaccuracies that were rife throughout the book. Apparently this work of fiction was slanderous enough for a spokesman for the Vatican itself to speak out against the book, slamming its multitude of historical and cultural errors and demanding Christians everywhere boycott the book and the movie. After seeing the movie, I feel this is perhaps the one time I should have listened to the advice of the church.

 

Catcher in the Rye (1951)

 the catcher in the rye

J. D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye was banned in various places around the world including Australia, because it main character Holden Caulfield displayed all the characteristics that authorities hated, he drank, he smoke, and worst of all, he blasphemed!

At this time in Australia, the name of banned books were not released to the public, the books were simply seized on entry to the country.

One day, the kind Ambassador from the United States, as a good will gesture, proudly presented copies of the book to a number Australian diplomats and politicians as an example of the fine literature that was coming out of his country [3].

When this small snafu became public, there was a fair amount of public outrage, and eventually led to an overhaul of the entire censorship system in Australia, as well as the quiet unbanning of the book.

 

Sources
[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_Eggs_and_Ham#Lexicon
[2]http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124113399848475095.html
[3] http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/books/array-of-banned-books-shows-australia-on-a-more-innocent-page-20130125-2dc3y.html#ixzz2MjmrH3M7

5 Books you won’t believe were Banned.