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Keep Alexie's Book in Curriculum

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A non-Native family is demanding that Billings School District 2 ban "The Abosuletly True Diary of a Part-Time Indian" by Sherman Alexie from the Sophomore Language Arts curriculum due to its brief discussion of human sexuality. This attempt to censor contemporary Native literature is a gross undermining of the Indian Education for All mandate imposed by the Montana State Office of Public Instruction.

This work is in succession to a long list of classics that have come under fire in our shameful history of banned literature. "Lord of the Flies" by William Golding, current required reading in the SD2 curriculum, was challenged by the Florida Public School libraries in 1992 because of profanity, lurid passages about sex and statements defamatory to minorities, God, women and the disabled. This timeless classic has grown into a genreally accepted commentary on human behavior.

This literary work must remain in the curriculum because it is an honest represtentation of Native custom, life, and tradition. Regardless of culture, nationality, race, creed or origin, we all are able to identify with Alexie's description of teenage alientation and angst.



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