Josiah's Reviews > The Sneetches and Other Stories

The Sneetches and Other Stories by Dr. Seuss
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Mar 09, 10


This is a very impressive book. In the various stories compiled in this one volume, Dr. Seuss addresses several points of social contention with a touch like that of the butterfly's wings, getting his point across with vivid clarity but not a hint of preachiness. The story of the Sneetches is a true classic, showing rather than telling the effects that elitism has not only on the people across the way from us who we look down on, but the effect it has on us, as well. When we begin to consider someone else to be less than we are because of anything we have that they don't—wealth, status, a good family, or perhaps even a star on our bellies—the only result that can ultimately come is hurt. Maybe a little, maybe a lot, but the hurt is definitely coming.

The good thing about the zaniness of Dr. Seuess's writing style is that it allows for such important concepts to be introduced to kids at a very early age, giving them time to absorb the lessons as if by osmosis. When you've eagerly read all you're life that it's wrong for the Sneetches who "have stars upon thars" to think themselves superior to the others, then how can you bring yourself to look down on a person because of their race, fashion style, way of speaking, or...anything?

The last story in the book delivers a strong lesson about the impact of fear in one's life. One can either run from the cold reaches of that fear, as basest instinct would suggest, or accept the difficulty of staying, and deal with fear directly. Oftentimes, the things that we fear don't turn out to even be that bad, as is the case in this story with the empty pair of pants.

All in all, The Sneetches and Other Stories represents Dr. Seuss near the top of his game, I'd say, delivering important social lessons with his typical unending supply of grace. Grace wrapped in a lot of craziness, sure, but grace nonetheless. And who couldn't do with a little bit of craziness now and then?

I would give two and a half stars to The Sneetches and Other Stories.
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