Susan Patron on Scrotum controversy

Fang-Face writes "'Scrotum' as a Children's Literary Tool, by Susan Patron, is her viewpoint on why she used the word.

Why has one word, "scrotum," generated such controversy and heated debate over my book, "The Higher Power of Lucky"? Lucky, the protagonist, overhears the word on the first page, doesn't know what it means, and wonders; but there's no one she can trust enough to ask about it. The tiny town of Hard Pan, Calif., hasn't many resources for a curious, vulnerable 10-year-old trying to figure out how the world works.

As a writer of creative fiction myself, I know very well that when the censormorons cry "Did you have to use 'that' word?" the answer is almost invariably, "Yes"."

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Creative is as creative does

"As a writer of creative fiction myself"Ahhh, now I can look back and understand all your previous comments on censorship, Fang Face. I always thought they were sort of...unreal!

Re:Creative is as creative does

Is that like writing fiction with my mouth? Someone does that Simpson? Clinton? someone like that.

No need to use this word...

Maybe her next book could use the word nipple or vulva? There was no good reason to use the word 'scrotum' in a children's book unless you want to gin up publicity and sales. And this book deserves the Newberry? What a joke...

Left nut

I would give my left nut not to hear anymore about the scrotum issue.

Re:Creative is as creative does

Is that like writing fiction with my mouth? Someone does that . . .

The Republican Party. The "reasons" they made up for the illegal invasion of Iraq, for instance; the idea that the U.S. and the world is safer from terrorism; that tax cuts for the rich would bring relief to the middle class and poverty stricken; the defamations of Democratic Party members; etc, ad nauseum. . . .

Re:Creative is as creative does

now I can look back and understand all your previous comments on censorship, Fang Face. I always thought they were sort of...unreal!

A statement which indicates that you know nothing of writing or of fiction. It makes me wonder if you know anything of reading.

Re:No need to use this word...

Don't be a pinhead. My son is four and knows what the word scrotum means. He also knows what penis means; I suppose that word "has no place" either? Maybe you would like an age restriction for anatomical descriptions?

Re:Left nut

Yeah. That author had a lot of balls to use that term. It really seems to be driving people nuts. She should be sacked.

"You did it, Nibbles! Now... chew through my ball sack!" - Principal Skinner, The Simpsons

Re:No need to use this word...

If you want to teach your son those words (and vulgar expressions of the same) at age four, that's your decision. Society doesn't need to treat children like mini-adults or accelerate the wonderful time of childhood. The use of this word flat out does not add anything to the story, and I'd bet if a word describing female anatomy were used, more people would be up in arms.

Re:No need to use this word...

The use of this word flat out does not add anything to the story, . . .

How the Hell would you know? You didn't write it. As for what it does do for the story, read Ms. Patron's op/ed with an open mind instead of with your mind already made up that it won't be swayed by the facts.

Re:No need to use this word...

It seems you have a knack for amoral and egotistical responses on this website. Maybe someday when you grow up you'll understand the legitimate concerns adults (especially parents) have about young children reading this book. The fact that it was awarded a Newberry is laughable, but then, so is the ALA.

Re:No need to use this word...

Maybe someday when you grow up you'll understand the legitimate concerns adults (especially parents) have about young children reading this book.

There are no legitimate concerns over the reading of this book by children. Children are not stupid as the hypesensitive assume they are. They are quite capable of handling difficult concepts and situations such as death and body parts. Perhaps someday you'll grow up and learn to respect that even children have human dignity and are not merely sub-human cattle.

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