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Taking the 'N' word out of Huckleberry Finn. Options · View
MrNudiePants
Posted: Thursday, January 06, 2011 3:05:45 PM

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Location: United States
LadyX wrote:


They just heard the news- no more 'nigga' in the verses...

*I'm a big fan of rap, and I'm half-black, just so you know were this is coming from.


I never understood what "nigga" meant until I started listening to rap. I mean, really listening to it. Same as I never understood how many ways you can use the word "bitch", and how calling a hot chick a bitch can be a good thing sometimes.

OMGBBQ!!!

Words are all scary and stuff, and they should be... like... banned... and stuff!!!
Guest
Posted: Thursday, January 06, 2011 8:44:24 PM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 674,145
Taking the word out and replacing it with a less offensive 21st century word defeats the entire purpose of "Huckleberry Finn". Twain wanted to show the casual racism of the people of the time, even that of his protagonist- Huck's matter of fact use of the word throughout the book shows how his character doesn't realize that it is a hurtful word- and the whole book leads up this one passage- and without the word being used so much to this point- the whole passage loses its meaning:

(Warning: offensive language ahead)




"Once I said to myself it would be a thousand times better for Jim to be a slave at home where his family was, as long as he's got to be a slave, and so I'd better write a letter to Tom Sawyer and tell him to tell Miss Watson where he was. But I soon give up that notion, for two things: she'd be mad and disgusted at his rascality and ungratefulness for leaving her, and so she'd sell him straight down the river again; and if she didn't, everybody naturally despises an ungrateful nigger, and they'd make Jim feel it all the time, and so he'd feel ornery and disgraced. And then think of me! It would get all around, that Huck Finn helped a nigger to get his freedom; and if I was to ever see anybody from that town again, I'd be ready to get down and lick his boots for shame. That's just the way: a person does a low-down thing, and then he don't want to take no consequences of it. Thinks as long as he can hide it, it ain't no disgrace. That was my fix exactly. The more I studied about this, the more my conscience went to grinding me, and the more wicked and low-down and ornery I got to feeling. And at last, when it hit me all of a sudden that here was the plain hand of Providence slapping me in the face and letting me know my wickedness was being watched all the time from up there in heaven, whilst I was stealing a poor old woman's nigger that hadn't ever done me no harm, and now was showing me there's One that's always on the lookout, and ain't agoing to allow no such miserable doings to go only just so fur and no further, I most dropped in my tracks I was so scared. Well, I tried the best I could to kinder soften it up somehow for myself, by saying I was brung up wicked, and so I warn't so much to blame; but something inside of me kept saying, "There was the Sunday school, you could a gone to it; and if you'd a done it they'd a learnt you, there, that people that acts as I'd been acting about that nigger goes to everlasting fire."

It made me shiver. And I about made up my mind to pray; and see if I couldn't try to quit being the kind of a boy I was, and be better. So I kneeled down. But the words wouldn't come. Why wouldn't they? It warn't no use to try and hide it from Him. Nor from me, neither. I knowed very well why they wouldn't come. It was because my heart warn't right; it was because I warn't square; it was because I was playing double. I was letting on to give up sin, but away inside of me I was holding on to the biggest one of all. I was trying to make my mouth say I would do the right thing and the clean thing, and go and write to that nigger's owner and tell where he was; but deep down in me I knowed it was a lie-and He knowed it. You can't pray a lie- I found that out.

So I was full of trouble, full as I could be; and didn't know what to do. At last I had an idea; and I says, I'll go and write the letter- and then see if I can pray. Why, it was astonishing, the way I felt as light as a feather, right straight off, and my troubles all gone. So I got a piece of paper and a pencil, all glad and excited, and set down and wrote:

Miss Watson your runaway nigger Jim is down here two mile below Pikesville and Mr. Phelps has got him and he will give him up for the reward if you send. HUCK FINN

I felt good and all washed clean of sin for the first time I had ever felt so in my life, and I knowed I could pray now. But I didn't do it straight off, but laid the paper down and set there thinking- thinking how good it was all this happened so, and how near I come to being lost and going to hell. And went on thinking. And got to thinking over our trip down the river; and I see Jim before me, all the time; in the day, and in the night-time, sometimes moonlight, sometimes storms, and we a floating along, talking, and singing, and laughing. But somehow I couldn't seem to strike no places to harden me against him, but only the other kind. I'd see him standing my watch on top of his'n, stead of calling me, so I could go on sleeping; and see him how glad he was when I come back out of the fog; and when I come to him agin in the swamp, up there where the feud was; and such-like times; and would always call me honey, and pet me, and do everything he could think of for me, and how good he always was; and at last I struck the time I saved him by telling the men we had smallpox aboard, and he was so grateful, and said I was the best friend old Jim ever had in the world, and the only one he's got now; and then I happened to look around, and see that paper.

It was a close place. I took it up, and held it in my hand. I was a trembling, because I'd got to decide, forever, betwixt two things, and I knowed it. I studied a minute, sort of holding my breath, and then says to myself:

"All right, then, I'll go to hell"- and tore it up."

The book needs to be left as is- and it is a perfect chance for a good teacher to discuss racism and ignorance- rather than sanitizing it and pretending such a thing didn't (and still does) exist.
Guest
Posted: Friday, January 07, 2011 4:52:54 PM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 674,145
Quote:
That guy that's smiling? He's the one guy that doesn't use the 'n' word.*


Busta Rhymes? Yeah, I know. I like him.
Magical_felix
Posted: Friday, January 07, 2011 5:28:51 PM

Rank: Wild at Heart

Joined: 4/3/2010
Posts: 5,341
Location: California
chefkathleen wrote:
Quote:
That guy that's smiling? He's the one guy that doesn't use the 'n' word.*


Busta Rhymes? Yeah, I know. I like him.


Recommended listening... 'Street Shit' by Busta Rhymes.



Woman
Posted: Friday, January 07, 2011 9:05:15 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 11/21/2009
Posts: 674
Location: Stopping the war 'tween Harold and Kumar
WARNING!!!!! Bad joke to follow!!!!!

I asked some of my students about this topic the other day when I saw them at the clinic, and this one cheeky arsed boy looked very seriously at me and said, "Ms Woman, what do you mean people are not liking this? Americans cannot read!!!"

He meant to make a joke at the government and its fight against illiteracy...

Bad joke over!!!

My first thought is to say no it should not be changed.

Then I think do I really care? For if I have children, they better beleive it that they will be reading the original Huck Finn... and all my neices and nephews already have the original Huck Finn in their libraries.

In the hyper sensitive bleeding heart world we live in... it seems to be that we take great pride in trying to protect people from being offended.

Is there REALLY anyone that is offended by this? Or is it just people really are not offended by it just jumping on the band wagon to fight for one of those silly causes?

And if this is the case... and people really do try to keep people from feeling offended... why is it so many people are actually offended when people do dumb things like this?



Living life and enjoying life are two different things... just need to figure out how to do both at the same time to live it right!

Woman... GO FLY A KITE!!!!! Take a slideshow walk with me on a walk through the parks of Inner Mongolia, China. Then enjoy the tale of a very traditional day in the life of a white Woman in China.
Guest
Posted: Friday, January 07, 2011 9:36:17 PM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 674,145


Couldn't find a clean "Scenario" so this will have to do. What was that again? Pass it!

BTW, ya'll seen "Drumline?" That's the brother under the pool table, and on the far left in the alley.

"Niggah", I lost count. Let's edit this bitch.
Guest
Posted: Friday, January 07, 2011 10:27:01 PM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 674,145


P.S.

Here's a song that I have to edit myself from singing while working out. Yes, there is an edited version as well, and it sounds like shit. Just like "Slave Jim" would read, or "Scarface" sounds when watching it edited. For fuck sakes, that's why we invented the game.

It's all about context.
Piquet
Posted: Friday, January 07, 2011 11:29:59 PM

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Joined: 11/12/2009
Posts: 339
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Whoever thinks that Huckleberry Finn should be altered to make it more politically correct has either never read the book or totally failed to understand it.

Mark Twain was a pioneering champion of the Afro-American cause. In my opinion he stands up there with Frederick Douglas, Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Junior. Why dilute and emasculate his work and its message by changing his words ?



http://www.lushstories.com/stories/quickie-sex/claudia-incarnatapart-vii.aspx
DirtyMartini
Posted: Saturday, January 08, 2011 12:03:29 AM

Rank: Purveyor of Poetry & Porn

Joined: 10/19/2009
Posts: 5,843
Location: Right here on Lush Stories..., United States
You know, I'd like to say this is an interesting thread and that I'd been giving this very subject some heavy thought recently...

A recent forum post had pointed out that some Lush members are actually very offended by some of the stories on here, particularly the incest stories...
I think I may have come up with a solution...

I myself was reading through an incest story recently and I too was shocked by how many times the words "brother" and "sister" appeared...
My solution would be to replace these words in all the incest stories with the words "bro"...which is a common urban term of endearment and does not imply any actual relationship, and replace the word "sister" with "sista" which the Urban Dictionary defines as "a woman who carries herself with pride"...

What do other Lushkins think???



You know you want it, you know you need it bad...get it now on Amazon.com...
Lush Erotica, an Anthology of Award Winning Sex Stories

Guest
Posted: Saturday, January 08, 2011 12:28:29 AM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
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As for Llincoln, I don't believe he had the true inspiration and purity of Martin.

And as for "sista", please no. Sistah to me is a pure word, meaning a true sister of the humankind. One who is always there for a kindred and a relation that is not tainted by the usual norm. Bro, take it or leave it. I tend to liken it to Brah, which is a colloquialism, at least to me, for buddy, chum, or acquaintance.
Just-SJ
Posted: Sunday, January 09, 2011 11:40:15 PM

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Joined: 10/31/2010
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Let me start by saying that I'm a librarian. I am totally completely 100% against changing the name to Slave Jim. I HATE censorship, especially in literature. The use of the "N" word is a reflection of the times, the social structure, the way of the world as it was. Completely defeats the purpose of the story.

Stupid stupid stupid censorship.

Follow my blog! Latest post: Shake Your Bootie
Woman
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 3:05:40 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 11/21/2009
Posts: 674
Location: Stopping the war 'tween Harold and Kumar
Just-SJ wrote:
Stupid stupid stupid censorship.


Ahhhh... my darling Vixen.... to this we must forever and a day disagree upon... for I do beleive censorship has its place.... just not in Huck Finn. In other places. Yes. It has its place.



Living life and enjoying life are two different things... just need to figure out how to do both at the same time to live it right!

Woman... GO FLY A KITE!!!!! Take a slideshow walk with me on a walk through the parks of Inner Mongolia, China. Then enjoy the tale of a very traditional day in the life of a white Woman in China.
Guest
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 5:32:19 AM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 674,145
Woman wrote:
Just-SJ wrote:
Stupid stupid stupid censorship.


Ahhhh... my darling Vixen.... to this we must forever and a day disagree upon... for I do beleive censorship has its place.... just not in Huck Finn. In other places. Yes. It has its place.



ooo well thats got me curious...what places are those?

personally, i dont believe in censorship as much as having a sense of personal responsibility for things you say and put out there. i think we should censor ourselves i guess.

in america of course we have freedom of speech, and as shown by recent events in Pakistan, that is a good good thing and i am grateful for it. however, some seem to think it give them free license to say whatever they like whenever they like, regardless of how it effects those around them. Case in point...those Westboro Baptist Church people who will now be protesting the funerals of those who died in AZ. wish someone would censor those guys.
mercianknight
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 6:34:38 AM

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Location: whispering conspiratorially in your ear, Bermuda
Just adding my tuppence since we all seem to be in agreement.

Thanks Felix for starting this one. Eviotis encapsulated most of my thoughts and again my thanks.

It is just plain ridiculous what they are planning to do to Twain's work and I hope...I really, really hope that this does NOT catch on. As for the U.S. getting some of their greatest literature back on the schoool curriculum? Well, since 'censorship' is very much in control of the various Districts, it is really up to the parents to shout that much louder than the vociferous minority. Unless you stand up and be counted then you will be empowering these word fascists!
coffee

"Whoa, lady, I only speak two languages, English and bad English." - Korben Dallas, from The Fifth Element

"If history repeats itself, and the unexpected always happens, how incapable must man be of learning from experience?" - George Bernard Shaw
Guest
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 8:15:56 AM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 674,145
mercianknight wrote:
Unless you stand up and be counted then you will be empowering these word fascist


nothing could be more true...my son just read Tom Sawyer and had no idea what the word meant..that it was even a "bad" word. i dont think by letting our 6th graders (for example) read this literature in tact as it was written is going to damage them or perpetuate the use of the word or racism itself. in fact, i think its one of the best ways to prevent it, provided that we educate our children about that word, where and when it came from and what our society was like when using it was the norm.
Guest
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 1:22:23 PM

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Taking the 'N' word out of Huckleberry Finn?


Because then it wouldn't make any sense....Huckleberry Fi....?d'oh!
myself
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 2:35:45 PM

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i don't like when they rewrite history crybaby

Torture the data long enough and they will confess to anything.
Woman
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 3:32:05 PM

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Joined: 11/21/2009
Posts: 674
Location: Stopping the war 'tween Harold and Kumar
LittleMissBitch wrote:
Woman wrote:


Ahhhh... my darling Vixen.... to this we must forever and a day disagree upon... for I do beleive censorship has its place.... just not in Huck Finn. In other places. Yes. It has its place.



ooo well thats got me curious...what places are those?

personally, i dont believe in censorship as much as having a sense of personal responsibility for things you say and put out there. i think we should censor ourselves i guess.

in america of course we have freedom of speech, and as shown by recent events in Pakistan, that is a good good thing and i am grateful for it. however, some seem to think it give them free license to say whatever they like whenever they like, regardless of how it effects those around them. Case in point...those Westboro Baptist Church people who will now be protesting the funerals of those who died in AZ. wish someone would censor those guys.


Exactly!!! My mama taught me the first kind of censorship in a land where everyone boasts about this thing called Freedom of Speech... which in my opinion... does not really exist. Just one of those really nice things people say that they have. But back to my mother and what she taught me before I even knew my abc's. "If you cannot say anything nice, don't bother opening your trap."

I have lots to say... as I am one of those rare people who do indeed really really really have Freedom of Speech. But I have to dash out to the hospital for treatment. I leave you with my blog post where I speak about why I beleive at times, censorship is indeed a good thing (Hollywood does it too!!! Lots and lots!!!!), and also when I decided enough was just enough. I had an "I hate China day" when I wrote Behind the Great Firewall... so... it is a little negative.

Censorship! We all do it!!

Behind the Great Firewall of China


Living life and enjoying life are two different things... just need to figure out how to do both at the same time to live it right!

Woman... GO FLY A KITE!!!!! Take a slideshow walk with me on a walk through the parks of Inner Mongolia, China. Then enjoy the tale of a very traditional day in the life of a white Woman in China.
myself
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 3:46:19 PM

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I believe, even though it's not always pretty or correct, that censorship, editing and even rewriting history is someone's freedom of speech.

Torture the data long enough and they will confess to anything.
Guest
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 4:32:44 PM

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Joined: 12/1/2006
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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/hetertqebu-walters/educate-dont-censure-the-_b_806601.html

Then let Mr. Alan Gribben write his own book, and thesis as to why it should be replaced before trying to be politically correct in order to fulfill the almighty purse.
myself
Posted: Monday, January 10, 2011 4:59:51 PM

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Location: .showyourdick.org/
agreed

Torture the data long enough and they will confess to anything.
stihl
Posted: Thursday, March 10, 2011 11:36:49 AM

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Joined: 2/9/2011
Posts: 3
Little bit of an old post but anyhow. If classic litrature is going to be changed to suit political correctness then we are screwed. Has anyone read Uncle Remus and Briar Rabbit and The Nigger Tar Baby? Those are some more classics. I don't condone rasicst slander. I also don't think things should be changed just to hide a part of a once accepted dialect. Regardless of what we do to hide our children and others from being hurt it will happen. I just think that people need to use these old ways to teach new generations to be different.
Bunny12
Posted: Thursday, March 10, 2011 8:25:44 PM

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It's political correctness run a muck!

Bunny12


Bunny Rabbits cute and fuzzy they want to love you but they have razor sharp teeth - don't piss them off!
SIL50
Posted: Thursday, March 10, 2011 8:46:31 PM

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Location: Alabama
Actually I think Uncle Remus and Briar Rabbit and The Nigger Tar Baby, are already on a list of banned books. Or at least they are to my knowledge no longerin print. If you find one buy it because if they aren't out of print there is a movement to do it.
MissyLuvsYa
Posted: Saturday, March 12, 2011 8:32:50 PM

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Joined: 3/12/2011
Posts: 550
Location: somewhere on the coast, United States
Why change it? Turn history into a lie?

That word is on just about every rap cd ever recorded. Are these morons gonna make those rap artists go back and re-record all those cds. Naaaa!

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