[aisle] Addressing Problematic Authors
kkerner at dps109.org
Thu Sep 24 10:15:43 CDT 2020
Can we also say that a person "held rascist views" or "cheated on their
taxes" or "was convicted of murder" instead of "was a bad person"? That's
a very broad judgement to make based on one aspect of a person's character,
albeit an important one, but humans are more complex entities. It would
not be helpful if we started labelling all people as "good" or "bad" so
simplistically. It is actually part of the problem of incivility that
society is experiencing now.
On Thu, Sep 24, 2020 at 8:53 AM Nichole Folkman via AISLE <
aisle at list.railslibraries.info> wrote:
> I'm glad you bring this up. I do not have any specific resources to offer,
> but I do think it's really important to show authors as humans who have
> faults and are often problematic. Children are good at sitting with
> difficulties like understanding that someone can be a great writer and a
> bad person. Kate Messner has been talking about similar issues on her
> Twitter lately.
> On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 4:21 PM John Heideman via AISLE <
> aisle at list.railslibraries.info> wrote:
>> I don't think an author's lifestyle or political views should matter.
>> The content of the book should matter.If we censure every author whose
>> views or lifestyle we disagree with we won't have many books in our
>> Mr. Heideman ( Children's Librarian North Chicago Public Library)
>> On Wed, Sep 23, 2020 at 3:49 PM Claire Greene via AISLE <
>> aisle at list.railslibraries.info> wrote:
>>> Hi, everyone!
>>> I'm trying to develop a playbook for teachers in my school to use to
>>> address content written by problematic authors.
>>> My number one priority is finding substantive and meaningful ways to
>>> represent diverse perspectives in the curriculum, but my question is about
>>> addressing the use of works by problematic authors that are already written
>>> into the curriculum.
>>> Specifically, our 6th grade LA curriculum includes work by Roald Dahl,
>>> who many of you will be aware was involved in propagating many disturbing
>>> racist ideas. While the content itself is not problematic, I think it's
>>> hugely important to address the issue of his character in a clear and
>>> concrete way.
>>> Does anyone have any specific lessons or resources that they have
>>> already piloted with students around this theme?
>>> I have already perused the sources below, but I wanted to reach out to
>>> you all as well.
>>> PBS Tools for Anti-Racist Teaching
>>> Teaching Tolerance Guide for Discussing Difficult Topics with Students
>>> and all of the resources included in this epic EdWeek Blog:
>>> 15 Classroom Resources for Discussing Racism, Policing, and Protest
>>> Thank you for your insights!
>>> Claire Greene
>>> School Librarian
>>> Northbrook Junior High School
>>> cgreene at northbrook28.net
>>> *Empower Every Learner*
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> Nichole Folkman
> K-12 Librarian/ STEAM Director
> Co-chair of the Lincoln Teen Readers' Choice Award
> Scholastic Bowl Coach
> Antler/ Staglite Advisor
> she/ her/ hers
> Check out my projects at
> Currently Reading
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*Kathleen M. Kerner, M.L.S.*
Library Information Specialist
Walden Elementary School
Deerfield Public Schools District #109
630 Essex Ct.
Deerfield, IL 60015
(847) 945-9660 x 3136
kkerner at dps109.org
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