In the ranting and raving of Senator Josh Brecheen in his “Senate Review,” although he identifies The Bluest Eye as a Common Core Curriculum “recommendation,” he seems to miss the point of the word “recommendation”: Schools are not required to use the novel.
No, in fact, schools can choose whatever novel they want for this section of the curriculum.
That really does make a world of difference, Senator Brecheen.
And, while we’re at it, let’s talk about the definition of the word “pornography.” The Oxford Dictionary of the English Language defines it as “printed or visual material containing the explicit description or display of sexual organs or activity, intended the stimulate erotic rather than aesthetic or emotional feelings.”
The very statements of author Toni Morrison that Senator Brecheen quotes bear out the fact that the novel is not pornographic. It was written to try to help the reader understand what’s behind rape. And why is it important to understand how a rapist feels? We must understand in order to deal with the crime effectively and to try to prevent it.
My advice to Senator Brecheen in such a situation is to calm down and start reading and trying to understand the dictionary.
- Joe Littlejohn of Durant, Oklahoma