“The Most Dangerous Game” Goes Too Far For Colorado Mom
Sarah Timme was reviewing her son’s homework one night when she discovered he’d been assigned the 1924 short story “The Most Dangerous Game” by Richard Connell. She was so upset, she’s asked for the story to be withdrawn from the curriculum, according to a story on Huffington Post.
If you haven’t read it, the crux of the plot is about a man who hunts humans for sport - which is as controversial an idea as it ever was.
Part of Timme’s objection revolves around the recent sexual assault and murder of 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway by a 17-year-old. Timme argues...
...that "The Most Dangerous Game" only serves to encourage school violence, adding that she was "outraged and appalled" by the story and assignment, which were disturbing to both her and her son.
Connell’s story has been used in classrooms for a very long time, particularly to study the underlying principles of literature, and themes like human ethics and reason versus instinct. I can remember reading it, myself, at school.
And this isn’t the first time this year a call to ban or withdraw a book has been highlighted in the press, with other targets including The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins ("sexually explicit" and "unsuited to age group and violence.") and In Our Mothers' House by Patricia Polacco (story of children being raised by a lesbian couple). I’m sure there are loads more on the banned books list that I’ve overlooked.
While the subject matter may not appeal to everyone, I can’t say Connell's story affected me the way Timme says it affected her son, and as ever, this brings me back to the question of whether there’s any point to “banning” books?
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