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Policies & Practices > Special Edited Editions of Huckleberry Finn

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message 1: by vicki_girl (new)

vicki_girl | 2765 comments Should the following be combined with the main listing for Huckleberry Finn?

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Robotic Edition

According to the description (which I got from the giveaway): "In an effort to fight the censorship of this iconic piece of literature, editors Gabriel Diani and Etta Devine have removed every instance of the word "n-word" and replaced it with the word "robot." Complete and unabridged (except for bits here and there), with E.W. Kemble's original illustrations painstakingly altered by artist Denise Devine to include robots, this bold new edition makes Twain's timeless work accessible to a whole new generation of readers"

There are several others of this type that are already combined:

The Hipster Huckleberry Finn
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Patriot's Edition

I don't personally have a strong feeling either way. I just want to be consistent. Opinions?


message 2: by Faye (new)

Faye Pettitt (lummi) | 23 comments Does it have a different ISBN? If so, I think a new listing can be made. If not, then combining might be the best idea. That's just my opinion though, perhaps another librarian has a better soloution.


message 3: by Julie (new)

Julie (readerjules) | 36 comments In my personal opinion, I don't think any of them should be combined with the original. They are not the same as the original.


message 4: by Amara (last edited Jun 04, 2012 02:09PM) (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Is the censored version combined with the non-censored version? If so, I don't see any reason not to combine this "protest" version with them, too. It changes just as much/little as the censored version, so it makes sense to me. *shrug*


CaptKirk42 Classic Whovian (klandersen) | 20 comments To be consistent I think it should go in with the others. Personally these edits to make the classic work "PC" both annoys me and humors me. For the most part anytime someone wants to change things to be "PC" it automatically makes me against it.


message 6: by Cait (last edited Jun 04, 2012 02:13PM) (new)

Cait (tigercait) | 5005 comments It seems like far less text is changed than when something is abridged, so that would be an argument for combining it, but it might also be argued that the type of change means that this should count not as the original work but as a satire of it, in which case it should be separated and attributed primarily to the adapter. It's a particularly unimaginative satire, to my mind (and I say this as someone who gave Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: The Graphic Novel four stars), but after all we're not here to judge literary merit.


message 7: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 43604 comments Mod
I definitely think they should be combined.


ஐ Briansgirl (Book Queen)ஐ (briansgirlkate) To me, enough is changed that it is no longer the original and shouldn't be combined. And if I was looking for the original, I certainly wouldn't want to find this instead.

It's on my son's Sophmore Honor's English summer reading list and I can't imagine what the teacher would say if my son read the "robotic edition" instead.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 69 comments I'd say it was satire (not very effective satire, but satire), myself.


message 10: by Kathy (new)

Kathy Davie (kathydavie) | 13 comments vicki_girl wrote: "Should the following be combined with the main listing for Huckleberry Finn?

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Robotic Edition

According to the description (which I got from the giveaway): "In an ..."


WTF? NO. I want the original. If I want to read about robots, I'll read Asimov..!

I'm with Susanna...lame and ineffective satire trying to satisfy both sides. What is wrong with learning about our past? The TRUTH about our past. What's that saying about not knowing the past condemns us to repeat it? Why would we ever want to repeat that part of our history??


message 11: by Amara (last edited Jun 04, 2012 05:04PM) (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Kathy wrote: "vicki_girl wrote: "Should the following be combined with the main listing for Huckleberry Finn?

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Robotic Edition

According to the description (which I got from the ..."


I'm not sure what that has to do with the question of whether or not this book, designed to protest censorship of this classic, should be linked as an edition of said classic.


message 12: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (last edited Jun 04, 2012 06:49PM) (new)

rivka | 43604 comments Mod
Whether someone wants to read a given edition, or whether it would satisfy a given teacher, doesn't seem to have much to do with the question at hand.

I have no plans to read the French edition of Huck Finn anytime soon, and no English lit teacher would allow me to read it in place of one in English. But we combine it with the English editions and the ones in Mandarin Chinese.

The question is not whether they are interchangeable. It's whether they are similar enough to be linked as editions of the same book.


Cheryl has hopes her life will calm down soonish (cherylllr) | 362 comments And if it's just the substitution of that one word, they're much more similar than translations & abridgements (which it is policy to combine). To me it seems clear they have to be combined, and it's just a matter of 'caveat emptor' for teachers & etc.

The question actually is, do we have enough information to know which of these is that similar, and which might be more akin to P&P&Zombies? I don't think we can be consistent - each 'satire' will vary in how much content is changed.


message 14: by Amara (last edited Jun 04, 2012 07:26PM) (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Cheryl in CC NV wrote: "The question actually is, do we have enough information to know which of these is that similar, and which might be more akin to P&P&Zombies?"

At least in the cases of the three linked above, each claims to alter nothing of note besides the racial slurs.


message 15: by vicki_girl (new)

vicki_girl | 2765 comments Cheryl in CC NV wrote: "And if it's just the substitution of that one word, they're much more similar than translations & abridgements (which it is policy to combine)."

I concur with this (and rivka's argument in msg 12). As Amara stated in msg 14 it's pretty clear that these ones that I found are doing a "find & replace" with a few minimal other edits (as stated in the description of the robotic edition). Other more ambiguous items would have to be judged on a case by case basis.

For the record, I think Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, as well as Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Zombie Jim, should be kept separate.


message 16: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 43604 comments Mod
vicki_girl wrote: "For the record, I think Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, as well as Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Zombie Jim, should be kept separate."

They have distinctly different plots, and are FAR more different from their respective originals than in this case.


╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥ (tsunanisaurus) | 66 comments Susanna wrote: "I'd say it was satire (not very effective satire, but satire), myself."

Yes, I think I agree with Susanna here. I think they ought to be kept separate. The book seems to fit more along the lines at attempted humorous change of novel and doesn't fit as well with the original editions.


message 18: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments ஐ Briansgirl (Book Sale Queen)ஐ wrote: "To me, enough is changed that it is no longer the original and shouldn't be combined. And if I was looking for the original, I certainly wouldn't want to find this instead.

It's on my son's Sophmo..."


Actually we've had lots of teachers get the book. It is a great way to approach talking about the use of racist language in the book and Twain's use of satire. This might help you to understand. http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=...


message 19: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments vicki_girl wrote: "Cheryl in CC NV wrote: "And if it's just the substitution of that one word, they're much more similar than translations & abridgements (which it is policy to combine)."

I concur with this (and riv..."


We didn't just find and replace. Any reference to to the humanity of any non white person has been changed. Jim's eye is now his "optical lens" he eats coal instead of catfish. It's synthetic moss instead of Spanish moss. There is also the issue of the illustrations. They are vastly altered. Any person of color has been changed to a robot. We also have original material in the form of an essay about the project.

This book IS Huck Finn, but it's supplemental and additional material to the real novel, not the novel itself.

In the terms of this website I agree it's tricky, but how about this. Would you consider your personal rating of Huck Finn to be a rating of the Robotic Edition and would you consider your rating of the Robotic Edition to be a rating of Huck Finn?

And for those of you who are appalled this might help to fill in what you're missing. http://youtu.be/uzpVZoG23qE


message 20: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments Amara wrote: "Is the censored version combined with the non-censored version? If so, I don't see any reason not to combine this "protest" version with them, too. It changes just as much/little as the censored ve..."

I think the censored version should be separated.


message 21: by Amara (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Etta wrote: "Would you consider your personal rating of Huck Finn to be a rating of the Robotic Edition and would you consider your rating of the Robotic Edition to be a rating of Huck Finn?"

That's not really an issue here; readers can and do rate different editions of works separately, based on different artwork, translations, etcetera.

Etta wrote: "We didn't just find and replace. Any reference to to the humanity of any non white person has been changed. Jim's eye is now his "optical lens" he eats coal instead of catfish. It's synthetic moss instead of Spanish moss. ... Any person of color has been changed to a robot. We also have original material in the form of an essay about the project."

That, however, is important information, and might make this case more similar to the Pride & Prejudice & Zombies situation and less like a censorship/minor-changes situation.


message 22: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments Hrmmmm. It's really right on that line...


message 23: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments I'm getting people who are confused because the robotic edition is coming up as read for them when they've never heard of it. Maybe that line it's sitting on is on the side of a separate page.


message 24: by Amara (last edited Jun 11, 2012 10:24PM) (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) That should not be happening. People can shelve/mark as read/rate whichever editions they please. If the wrong edition is showing up for someone, the only explanation I can think of is that they actually shelved the wrong edition.


message 25: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments Amara wrote: "That should not be happening. People can shelve/mark as read whichever editions they please. If the wrong edition is showing up for someone, the only explanation I can think of is that they actuall..."

It was a librarian so I imagine she'll be able to work it out.


╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥ (tsunanisaurus) | 66 comments Amara wrote: "That should not be happening. People can shelve/mark as read whichever editions they please. If the wrong edition is showing up for someone, the only explanation I can think of is that they actuall..."

I know, for me personally, I had shelved the original plain ol' Huckleberry Finn. It has sat on my GR shelves for quite some time reading as the original title. Tonight, when a fellow Goodreaders review showed up in my feed; it showed the Robotic edition having been rated as 3 stars by me. Since I haven't read the book, nor heard of it until recently, I assume someone has combined the editions.


message 27: by Amara (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Tiffani wrote: "Amara wrote: "That should not be happening. People can shelve/mark as read whichever editions they please. If the wrong edition is showing up for someone, the only explanation I can think of is tha..."

I can't possibly imagine why combining the books would affect your ratings and reviews. Maybe some weird bug?


message 28: by Sandi (new)

Sandi Amara wrote: "People can shelve/mark as read/rate whichever editions they please."

A lot of people don't seem to know that. The question how to shelf more than one edition as a work-around for re-reads comes up frequently on the feedback forum.


message 29: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 43604 comments Mod
Amara, ratings/reviews show up on all editions, but as a review of another edition.


message 30: by ╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥ (last edited Jun 11, 2012 10:32PM) (new)

╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥ (tsunanisaurus) | 66 comments Amara wrote: "Tiffani wrote: "Amara wrote: "That should not be happening. People can shelve/mark as read whichever editions they please. If the wrong edition is showing up for someone, the only explanation I can..."

That seems possible, that it may just be a bug. I'll poke around the Librarian change log on the edition I have shelved and see if it was changed; or, hopefully, it's just a bug that will correct itself in good time.

edit: Rivka, thanks for the reminder about that. That's likely what has happened.


message 31: by Amara (last edited Jun 11, 2012 10:35PM) (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) rivka wrote: "Amara, ratings/reviews show up on all editions, but as a review of another edition."

Oh, I see what's going on here; I'd been under the impression that Tiffani had meant a separate rating for that edition had shown up as something new in her actual Recent Updates/shelves. My mistake!


message 32: by ╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥ (last edited Jun 11, 2012 10:51PM) (new)

╟ ♫ Tima ♪ ╣ ♥ (tsunanisaurus) | 66 comments Amara wrote: "rivka wrote: "Amara, ratings/reviews show up on all editions, but as a review of another edition."

Oh, I see what's going on here; I'd been under the impression that Tiffani had meant a separate r..."


Sorry Amara, my explanation & clarification abilities go right out the window after 10pm!


message 33: by Amara (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Tiffani wrote: "Amara wrote: "rivka wrote: "Amara, ratings/reviews show up on all editions, but as a review of another edition."

Oh, I see what's going on here; I'd been under the impression that Tiffani had mean..."


Don't worry about it--my comprehension's not so sharp at this hour of the night/morning, either. ;)


message 34: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments It seems that now the kindle version is another edition. Could all these issues be from the trolls screwing with the book?


message 35: by Amara (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Evidently someone uncombined them without realizing A) this discussion existed and B) there was more than one robotic edition combined in the first place. For the moment, they've been recombined.


message 36: by Bob (last edited Jun 15, 2012 02:40PM) (new)

Bob | 15 comments I will admit that I only partially understand the rating/reviewing process and how it's affected by separating vs. combining editions. But my understanding is that, if you combine two editions of a book, the ratings are also combined, so that the book as a whole gets an average rating that is the average of all the ratings given to either edition. So that even if you specify a particular edition, when you look at the book page associated with that edition, it will give the same number of ratings and average rating as the book page associated with the other edition.

1. Does the above make any sense?
2. If so, is it correct?
3. And if it's correct, then perhaps a variation of Etta's question in Message 19 would be a forceful argument in favor of separating the robot edition from the rest of Huck Finn. That is:

"Would you consider [the average] rating of Huck Finn to be [an indication of how most readers would be likely to rate] the Robotic Edition?"


message 37: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 43604 comments Mod
Ratings can be viewed for the work as a whole as well as for each individual edition.

Also, your argument would seem to imply that translations should not be combined with original works, and that is certainly a long-standing and immutable GR policy.


message 38: by Bob (new)

Bob | 15 comments rivka wrote: "Ratings can be viewed for the work as a whole as well as for each individual edition.

Also, your argument would seem to imply that translations should not be combined with original works, and that..."


I didn't realize you could look at the ratings for individual editions. Thanks for setting me straight.

I have to admit that your post pretty much leaves my argument in tatters.


message 39: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 43604 comments Mod
This is not my first rodeo. ;)


message 40: by [deleted user] (last edited Jun 15, 2012 03:57PM) (new)

I think they should be separate.I can live with having Hamlet in Klingon in my Hamlet mix, but robot Jim seems qualitatively different. To me it's more of an altered version than a straight substitution--the illustrations were altered as well.


message 41: by Julie (last edited Jun 15, 2012 04:25PM) (new)

Julie (readerjules) | 36 comments rivka wrote: "Also, your argument would seem to imply that translations should not be combined with original works, and that..."

I don't think translations are the same as this. A translation takes the story and changes the words into pretty much the equivalent words in another language, hopefully keeping the same intent and tone as the original. This robotic edition doesn't do that. It changes the story, using different words in the same language, and its intent is to make a statement of its own. As Osho said, its an altered version, not a translation.


message 42: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments I once again have the problem that the e-book is the regular edition. This keeps getting changed again and again. Is there any way to get the ebook and the book to stay together?

I also still think the editions should be separated.


message 43: by Eric (last edited Jun 24, 2012 08:29PM) (new)

Eric | 14 comments If a vote were taken, I'd vote for separating these. I don't think the policy for abridgments and translations should apply because both abridgments and translations typically attempt to maintain the intent of the original form in tone and style as much as possible. It is not about the amount of change but the type of change that is made. Changing a main character from human to a robot would be an egregious plot deviation for any abridgment or translation I can think of.

That said, I think this is really a close call, and it seems the decision has already been made.


message 44: by [deleted user] (new)

Given that the illustrations are also altered, I think it's more of a re-telling than an edition of the original.


message 45: by Peter (new)

Peter (pete_c) | 388 comments Osho wrote: "Given that the illustrations are also altered, I think it's more of a re-telling than an edition of the original."

I know I'm a bit late to this discussion, but this work seems to me to be an adaptation of the original, and should be credited to the adapter.

The difference seems most similar to radio drama vs talking book or graphic novel vs illustrated edition. In both of these cases, one is combined while the other is separated. (ie talking books and illustrated editions are combined while radio dramas and graphic novels are separated, even if the wording used is identical.)

It does not seem to me to be an abridgement (because new, unrelated material was added) nor a translation (because the alterations involve more than just changing the words to modern parlance).

I agree with Osho; "I think it's more of a re-telling than an edition of the original."


message 46: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments I agree with you guys. Can we get it changed?


message 47: by Abbey (new)

Abbey (abbess) | 3 comments Just found this discussion by following a link from the friend of a friend's book listings where I suddenly saw that *I* had a book listing for Huckleberry Finn the Robotic edition!. She had the Robotic Edition listed as she had reviewed it (*and* got into a long discussion with the author...) and *my* rating was listed under that title! I'd never heard of it before today, and have now deleted it completely from my own book lists. My original review and listing of the older edition appears itself to be just as I entered them; obviously, for a while, both were on my lists, with my ratings for the earlier book also shown on the Robotic Edition.

If the robotic listing had been fixed last month, shouldn't that extra book have disappeared from my list by now? Therefore, despite the latest post shown here being a month old, it appears the listing hadn't been entirely fixed.

Although I've been a GR Librarian myself for several years, I don't like to mess with combining or seperating (that damn word never looks right to me...) editions as I get confused very, very easily and don't want to screw things up for anybody else. (grin) Can somebody fix it soon, please? and thanks.

I doubt I am the only one who was "hit" by this. You know, I, personally, NEVER added that second listing (robotic edition) to my booklists, only entered the one review for the old copy I actually read. How did somebody add another to my personal lists and tie them together? AND without my ever knowing about it? Is that what's considered trolling around here??? If so, it's the first one I've had happen to me (that I know about...). What can I do about it in future?


message 48: by Abbey (new)

Abbey (abbess) | 3 comments although I had deleted Robotic Edition from my own lists, my rating (and those of many folks I know) for the ORIGINAL novel is *still* coming up on the Robotic edition page listing! When I looked at the editions listing, it shows Robotic listed IN with the original novel, as one of the 900+ editions of that classic/old novel. Surely that can't be correct? The really great rating I gave to Twain's novel should NOT be being credited to a quite different construct that I have not read!

It (robotic edition) may be a well-done work, but it is NOT the book I gave many stars of good rating to! And, I see that many (if not *all*) of the reviews on GR for Twain's novel are also tied to the Robotic book. Pumps up the Robotic edition's heft and influence, doesn't it? Although that's not truthful??? I don't want to do that, so how can it be fixed?

sorry to rant so, but this sort of cheating at the numbers bugs me. Will stop. (for now...)


message 49: by Amara (last edited Aug 05, 2012 06:51PM) (new)

Amara Tanith (aftanith) Abbey, there is no way for that specific edition to be on your shelves unless you added it. Please see messages 23-33.

ETA: To clarify in case you're still confused after reading those ten comments, ratings/reviews are attached to one specific edition. However, they remain visible to you when you view other editions.


message 50: by Etta (new)

Etta | 22 comments Hi Abby. Sorry this is happening. I've been trying to get them separated. They are on every other venue from Amazon to iTunes. There has been a lot of trolling on this book and I do wonder if that has something to do with it.


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