Huck Finn and the n-word

OK, I don’t usually post about social change, but…

I just read this piece on NPR about a new edition of Huckleberry Finn that replaces the n-word with “slave.”

When I saw a professional production of the musical Show Boat, the same word was replaced with “black folk.” (It was actually the first word of the show.)

My opinion? It’s silly.

It’s a word that has come to be offensive — I get that. But in the context of the work —whether it be the book or the musical — it’s appropriate.

In a school setting, there would need to be a lesson around it, explaining the historical context. What’s wrong with that?

Erasing a piece of history doesn’t make it not exist. Books and musicals certainly define history as much as a history book, sometimes moreso.

Agree? Disagree?

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Lisa on 6 January 2011 at 06:26

    Agreed.

  2. Posted by Dana on 13 January 2011 at 23:06

    I’m a little late getting to this, but exactly!!!! I hate that we swing from one end to the other. Get over it people. It’s a word that was used at the time that was socially acceptable at the time. Not anymore. People let’s move on. Just as you said, erasing a piece of history doesn’t make it not exist. **stepping off of soapbox**

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