District pulls 'To Kill A Mockingbird' from reading list due to complaints

Pauline Gross
October 16, 2017

While the Harper Lee novel has topped banned book lists since its inception 57 years ago, one MS school district is making headlines this week for its reasoning behind banning the classic from the 8th grade reading list.

Schools in the district will no longer teach the classic story of racial inequality in a small USA town, despite the book being a favourite of schools around the world for decades following its 1960 release.

"To Kill a Mockingbird" is listed on the Biloxi School District's website as a core text for eighth grade English Language Arts.

The School Board Vice President Kenny Holloway said that they were getting complaints due to some of the books language making people "uncomfortable".

She added some of the book's language "makes people uncomfortable".

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"It's still in our library".

In a statement to the Sun Herald, Superintendent Arthur McMillan said that there are other materials available to teach state academic standards.

"These resources may change periodically". The story follows Tom Robinson a Black man falsely accused of raping a young white woman in the depression era. When the book was announced it was also revealed that To Kill A Mockingbird had sold 40 million copies worldwide.

An email to the Sun Herald from a concerned reader referred to the book's use of the word "nigger" when it said the school board's decision was made "mid-lesson plan".

To Kill a Mockingbird is a Pulitzer Prize-winning book, one that is taught in school districts around the country for its powerful depiction of racism in small-town Alabama.

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