Thanks for being so awesome and supportive during my final presentation on Monday. I really appreciate it, especially your involvement during the interactive portion of my presentation.
It was really tough to finish out the last portion due to time constraints, but I was really intrigued by some of the choices that you all made about which books you’d ban and keep if you were cultural ministers in an authoritarian state.
Again, here was the assignment:
You’re in charge of the United States Department of Literacy and Cultural Betterment as a new fascist leader takes charge. As WRD students and potentially avid consumers of literacy from all walks of life, you have an understanding of the literary works of our time and the ways in which they influence society. This is your objective. Over the next five to ten minutes you must go through the list of highlighted books and proclaim, in the style of the Third Reich:
5 Books that your new state will censor and ban from the country
3 Books that you will accept, but not endorse as state doctrine
2 Books that you will actively promote as living up to the standards and ideological aims of your national socialist party. These books will be promoted as the standard-bearers of ideology and cultural betterment in your new regime.
1. Fifty Shades of Grey
2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
3. The Great Gatsby
4. To Kill a Mockingbird
5. Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham
6. Hamlet- Shakespeare
7. Pride and Prejudice
8. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy- Tolkien
9. The Republic- Plato
10. Huckleberry Finn- Mark Twain
I’m curious: which books did you all choose for the categories listed above? Why so? And, if you had to run your own fascist state in this style, what would be lost when some of these books, personal preferences or criticisms aside, are lost to society?