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Fairness for Harry Potter critics?

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  • Joan Marie Verba
    ... I was assigned The Hobbit for 8th grade English. I read a recent bestseller for 9th grade English. For 10th grade English, we had Out of The Silent Planet
    Message 1 of 47 , Aug 9, 2000
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      Wendell wrote:

      >> Assiging? Whoa, when did teachers start assigning Harry Potter? If
      >that's
      >> the case, perhaps the problem here is terminal trendiness. Are teachers
      >> expected to go through the bestseller list and find a currently hot book
      >to
      >> read to or to have read by their students? Is it accepted that no child
      >can
      >> understand a book that's more than a couple of years old?

      I was assigned The Hobbit for 8th grade English. I read a recent bestseller
      for 9th grade English. For 10th grade English, we had Out of The Silent
      Planet (though I think there was a more secular option for those who
      preferred one).

      Joan


      ***************************************************
      Joan Marie Verba verba001@...
      Mythopoeic Press Secretary, Mythopoeic Society
      List Administrator for DocEx, Mythsoc, MNSCBWI and
      MNSCREENW lists
      http://www.sff.net/people/Joan.Marie.Verba
      ****************************************************
    • Wayne G. Hammond
      ... So publishers may think, narrow-mindedly. I like to think that even Americans might find a phrase like philosopher s stone intriguing rather than
      Message 47 of 47 , Aug 15, 2000
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        >I read that the publisher thought that Americans wouldn't buy a book,
        >especially for children, if it had "philosopher's" anything in the title.
        >Alas! Probably too close to the truth.

        So publishers may think, narrow-mindedly. I like to think that even
        Americans might find a phrase like "philosopher's stone" intriguing rather
        than off-putting. I do, and certainly children are attracted to such
        things, even if some adults are not. I first read about the Philosopher's
        Stone in Flash comics in the 1960s, when DC were throwing all sorts of
        education at its young audience without us realizing, and liked the sound
        of the words as much as the concept.

        Rowling's publishers, both of them I gather, of course also felt that no
        boy would read a book by a female author, hence "J.K." rather than
        "Joanne". It never bothered me as a young reader who wrote a book as long
        as it was good, and there can be few male Harry Potter fans now who don't
        know that Rowling is a woman.

        Wayne Hammond
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