Native Son
by Richard Wright.
Book Jacket
American Library Association2010Challenged in Goffstown, NH (1978); Elmwood Park, NJ (1978) due to "objectionable" language; and North Adams, MA (1981) due to the book's "violence, sex, and profanity." Challenged at the Berrian Springs, MI High School in classrooms and libraries (1988) because the novel is "vulgar, profane, and sexually explicit." Retained in the Yakima, WA schools (1994) after a five-month dispute over what advanced high school students should read in the classroom. Two parents raised concerns about profanity and images of violence and sexuality in the book and requested that it be removed from the reading list. Challenged as part of the reading list for Advanced Placement English classes at Northwest High School in High Point, NC (1996). The book was challenged because it is "sexually graphic and violent." Removed from Irvington High School in Fremont, CA (1998) after a few parents complained the book was unnecessarily violent and sexually explicit. Challenged in the Hamilton High School curriculum in Fort Wayne, IN (1998) because of the novel's graphic language and sexual content.
Book Summary2011Bigger Thomas, a black boy, reared in the slum world of Chicago, is led by his environment into a life of crime. His patronizing reception by Communist associates of his employer's daughter, combined with other circumstances, throw him into a confused mental state in which he accidentally murders the girl. In the ensuing flight, pursued by a mob, he kills his own sweetheart before he is captured and condemned to death. ("Native Son" The Concise Oxford Companion to American Literature. James D. Hart. Oxford University Press, 1986. Oxford Reference Online. Oxford University Press. Middlesex School. 10 April 2009 )
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