Erin's Reviews > Little Black Sambo (Illustrated Edition)

Little Black Sambo (Illustrated Edition) by Helen Bannerman
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message 1: by Mary (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:36AM) (new)

Mary Pellecchia Is this the little kid who gets the tigers to run around in circles until they make butter for his pancakes? My guess is that this is banned for being insultingly racist. I remember reading it as a child and taking delight in Sambo's adventures as a little child, not as a little black child, but it could be that Sambo is kind of stupid(?). I don't really remember much except that he had an umbrella and there were tigers. I know that we never read it to Erin when she was little--you couldn't find a copy anywhere if you wanted to. What do you think, Erin? Is it a good thing it was banned?

message 2: by Erin (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:38AM) (new) - added it

Erin Well, it certainly LOOKS racist (insert judging-book-by-cover comment here) and my only other point of reference is the Hair soundtrack ("Colored Spade" lyrics) but I haven't read it yet. However, I must stand on my original soapbox of Banning is Bad. Because a) we have to learn from our mistakes, not bury them, and b) who decides what is bad and where do we draw what line? Anyone can see by my Banned List that some books considered by many to be the best ever written have been banned (including the Bible which HOW many people take to heart?) That does not mean they are Bad with a capital B and should not be read.

On the ther hand, were it not banned, I would prbably not care to read it, so perhaps that alone is its strongest selling point. Not even sure where I can find a copy of the original version. In conclusion, I think it is incredibly important to read such things as a cultural reference, if only to better understand Hair..!

Great. Now I'll be singing that all week.. "President of the United States of Love..." And now you will too.

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