Publisher Abrams has recently decided to cease publication of a parody picture book that took aim at famous children’s work. Bad Little Children’s Books offer up a humorous and raunchy retake of over 100 famous children’s books.
While critics were quick to rave over the creative wit and gut busting laughs within the book, many took to social media complaining over offensive material. Although ABRAMS representatives were quick to defend the author’s right to freedom of speech, as well as disparage the criticisms of the book as simply undue sensitivity towards what was clearly posited as humor; the author, who made the book under the pseudonym Arthur C. Glackely, asked publishers to terminate the publication.
The following are excerpts from the statement released by the author in lieu of the decision:
Some people have asked ABRAMS to ban the book and issue an apology for publishing it in the first place. I suspect that they’ve neither seen nor read the satirical work in its entirety or, as likely, that the current political climate in the United States has made the kind of dialogue I had hoped to promote through the publication of Bad Little Children’s Books impossible. This act of censorship is dangerous on so many levels, as free speech, satire, and parody are tools to help make us a stronger society, not a more divided one.
However, the book is clearly not being read by some in the way I had intended—as satire—and, more disturbingly, is being misread as the very act of hate and bigotry that the work was meant to expose, not promote.
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