New Mexico School Temporarily Bans Neil Gaiman's "Neverwhere"
There's a reason I've ended up doing most of the Neil Gaiman articles since I joined up here. It's me. I'm the reason. I'm a superfan and have read pretty much everything the man has published. Neverwhere was how we were introduced, and it was creepy fan-love at first sight.
Some, however, aren't so enamored with his work. Take a mother in New Mexico, for instance, who saw that her tenth-grade daughter was assigned Neverwhere, one of Gaiman's more well-known works, and was none too pleased. She went to the school and complained, and they responded in the way that schools typically do to complaining parents; they removed the book from the curriculum and library shelves. "For review", they insist, but it could lead to an outright ban. The reason?
“I reviewed the language personally. I can see where it could be considered offensive,” said Superintendent George Straface, who is reviewing Wilmott’s complaint. “The F-word is used. There is a description of a sexual encounter that is pretty descriptive, and it’s between a married man and a single woman. Although kids can probably see that on TV anytime they want, we are a public school using taxpayer dollars."
There you have it. The F-word (which is "fuck", in case you were interested) and a sex scene depicting an extramarital affair.
As always, we can get into the argument that the mother is completely naive if she thinks that either of those issues are capable of traumatizing the average 10th grader, or that one parent's complaint is justification for opting that student out of the book, rather than banning it from the school. These arguments have been made and, well, we know how it's gone so far.
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