? Essay, Research Paper
THE CONTROVERSY: SHOULD HUCK FINN BE TAUGHT IN
The reading of the book, Huckleberry Finn in high schools is a big controversy that has been going on for years. Many people believe that it should not be required to read in schools while some believe that it should be read in schools.
I have taken notes from the series, Cultural Shock: Huck Finn, The Controversy, and I have read the teacher’s guide on Hulk Finn from www.pbs.org. From the research, I have found out that the number of people who believes that Hulk Finn should not be read in high school is the same number of the people who believe that the book should be read in high school.
Kathy Monteiro is a mother who has strong feelings about the idea that the book should be removed from the school’s required reading list. She says that the word “nigger” is offensive. She says, “How can you ask kids to go home and read the word ‘nigger’ two-hundred something times in Adventures of Huck Finn and then expect kids to come back to school and not use the word?”
Danny Elmore, a parent, states, “Five seconds before that word is used everyone in class might have been your friend. But now you’re reassessing yourself, and they’re reassessing you. It has a profound effect. Nothing is the same after it is used.”
At a meeting for those who opposed the book, a black man said that the book could be taught without using the “n” word. A black teacher admits that the word offended her, but without the word, there would be no meaning to the book.
Jocelyn Joshua, a scholar and a teacher, defends the teaching of Huck Finn. In the film, she says learning is not always painless and the book teaches us about mistreatment, friendship, and loyalty.
A Chinese student in the film believes that the book should be read because it teaches students the background of the word “nigger” and the actual meaning of the word because many people say the word without knowing the actual meaning of the word. So by teaching Huck Finn, students will learn that the word is offensive and will be more careful about how they use that word.
In my opinion, I think the book Huck Finn should be read and discussed. I understand that the word “nigger” is offensive. On the other hand, history is never going to change. Like the Chinese student said, the book should be read to teach us the meaning of the word. I think books should be read that teaches us history. By using the “n” word, we have a better understanding how it really was in the past. To my opinion, if books that were written based on the present use the word “nigger”, then the book should not be read in school.
Everyone has different opinions about words. Many feel that it is very discriminating, while many people think that using a word in a story teaches us about something. Controversies about discrimination will always be brought up in one way or another. It is very difficult to find a solution to make everyone happy. No matter what the decision, there will be always one that will not be happy.