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Activists calling for removal of classic books from school curriculum

2021-01-04 | 🔗
Wall Street Journal columnist and children's book critic Meghan Cox Gurdon discusses the effort on ‘Fox & Friends.’
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Rachel, thank you. Griff. Well, cancel culture comes to the classroom in a new op ed, our next guest says progressive activists are looking to perge classic works of literature from school curriculums under the slogan of disrupt text. Here, with more Wall Street Journal columnist, Megan Cox, Cur Dan welcome ive heard of american classics also being banned so whats driving this is it all critical race theory well, yeah thats, a good summation of whats going on yeah. These people are interested in displacing discrediting and if they can sort of banishing works from what they call the white canon- and this is where I mean there are so many points at which we have to dispute their assertions here. The idea of the Canon of Literature, which is the great production of art and imagination that belongs to all of humanity, the idea that it
belongs to any single racial group. So what they want to do if possible, is to get both taken out of the curriculum and, if not successful with that, then the idea is in the classroom to subvert them. Rachel in your piece, you wrote about a teacher at Lawrence Public School in Massachusetts, who was actually online bragging about getting the odyssey removed from her class or her school. But we reach out to the school theyre saying its, not true, im going to read the statement from the school they gave that to us last night they are saying: okay, the odyssey has not been banned or removed from the curriculum which would fly in the face of the great work. Our educators do every day to give students an essential, broad based literary foundation, and this means teaching both the Classic Canon and contemporary works. Your response. Well, I mean thats, wonderful, but thats kind of incredible, because I reached out to the school repeatedly to the schools, to the media, guys at the school to the teacher herself to the english department. For various reasons I know they received my
communicatin. I received nothing except a snip py response from the teacher saying my request for more information was invasive, so thats nice, but they were not exactly forthcoming its great. They are expressing some interest in the odyssey now and also I would like to say you know: why would somebody post something like that? Some? Why would a teacher groan publicly, which is what twitter is a public forum that proud to say we managed to get the odyssey off the curriculum? I dont know you tell me Lawrence School system Rachel well sure the public school can require it and the teacher can do whatever she wants in the classroom. Ultimately, let me get to what are children losing when they dont read these beautiful classics right? Well, I think one of the things that is happening with this presentation of books again with this sub version of books is that they go from being essentially an artform into being a kind of crude demonstration of political. You know kind of ugly political
character, so a child whose exposed I mean you could teach the odyssey lets say as one of the foundational stories one of the great adventure stories of all human history on which there is you know, theres art and metaphor, and you know stories of other kinds that are all based on the odyssey or draw from the odyssey, and you can teach that to children and then they walk around and they are equipped with some understanding of this culture. That has that theyre in or you can teach it as a story of you know, Massogeny, which is just a horrible, Miss reading, in my opinion, Rachel right, they lose that frame of reference for really who we are. I encourage parents, as I parent myself, to fight back against this kind of book. Banning our children need to be exposed to the classic, and I also encourage people to read your book right behind you, the en handted hour. I have that book and I love it and its very good for parents and thanks for joining us, Megan Cox, Gurdon,
and we appreciate your insight into this very important topic.
Transcript generated on 2021-01-04.