If you were to bother to read my books, to behave as educated persons would, you would learn that they are not sexy, and do not argue in favor of wildness of any kind. And no copies of this letter have been sent to anybody else. If you and your board are now determined to show that you in fact have wisdom and maturity when you exercise your powers over the education of your young, then you should acknowledge that it was a rotten lesson you taught young people in a free society when you denounced and then burned books— books you hadn’t even read. My books are probably more widely used in schools than those of any other living American fiction writer. It is true that some of the characters speak coarsely. The students’ lockers were search and their parents were told to hand over the books. amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0"; Kurt Vonnegut’s Letter to Drake High School: ‘You Have Insulted Me’ ... Drake High School in North Dakota made headlines in October of 1973 when school board members burned 32 copies of Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughter-House Five because … This is due to what is often described by those who censor it as its “obscene” content. whether it is in a little graduated table or big. This is extraordinarily insulting to me. I read in the newspaper that your community is mystified by the outcry from all over the country about what you have done. amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "historybyzim8-20"; If you and your board are now determined to show that you in fact have wisdom and maturity when you exercise your powers over the eduction of your young, then you should acknowledge that it was a rotten lesson you taught young people in a free society when you denounced and then burned books–books you hadn’t even read. The final sentence has immense power. By Kurt Vonnegut 1973 Kurt Vonnegut (1922-2007) was an American author and humorist. We are angered and sickened and saddened. With this phrase Vonnegut is able to set a inactive turn on decease. There is a person who toils alone for years in relative obscurity before finally cracking the code to become a hero. The myth of the lone genius. I love the part where Vonnegut explains he is a combat veteran with a purple heart. “It sounds too much like years past to me,” Axtmass told the Minot Daily News. You now hold the only copy in your hands. For questions/comments about the website or advertising inquiries, contact Zim at historybyzim@gmail.com, Benedict Cumberbatch reads a letter from Kurt Vonnegut – WikiSpeeks, “I am very real”: Kurt Vonnegut to Drake High School. I have earned whatever I own by hard work. However, few artists respond with the humor and aplomb exhibited in a letter written in 1973 to Charles McCarthy, the head of the school board at Drake High School in North Dakota. Some people […], The Great Mental Models Volumes One and Two are out. Stop me if this sounds familiar. [CDATA[ (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); // ]]> Even your own children are entitled to call you that. We’d do well […], The Pygmalion Effect is a powerful secret weapon. 2021 Farnam Street Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. It was evil deeds and lying that hurt us. Just discovered this 1973 letter from Vonnegut to the chairman of a school board that had taken to burning his books because they found them offensive.. Dear Mr. McCarthy: I am writing to you in your capacity as chairman of the Drake School Board. That is because people speak coarsely in real life. It is true that some of the characters speak coarsely. 22-Year-Old P.O.W. ” This phrase encompasses every decease in the novel. The author of this letter? or for that affair related to Pilgrim or non. We are angered and sickened and saddened. Axtmass, a Catholic priest, attended the school board meeting and told the board that he did not like certain parts of the book but was against the idea of burning it. Still curious? A lawsuit was even threatened by the American Civil Liberties Union against the school board. Do you have the courage and ordinary decency to show this letter to the people, or will it, too, be consigned to the fires of your furnace? I am among those American writers whose books have been destroyed in the now famous furnace of your school. Here’s the letter. His conscionable rage ranges far — all the way to Drake, North Dakota, in a 1973 letter to an anti-Vonnegut school chairman: “If you were to bother to read my books, to behave as educated persons would, you would learn that they are not sexy, and do not argue in favor of wildness of any kind. Certain members of your community have suggested that my work is evil. My parents chose to move here for the small schools and the land that my family already owned I started my kindergarten year in Bells Elementary … Create posts based upon cited sources his book Slaughter-House Five Pygmalion Effect is a combat infantry from. Novel Slaughterhouse-Five essay written for you, Plagiarism free, and even most. Widely used in schools than those of any other living American fiction writer have raised children. Deals with a moral question that we as humans have been destroyed in the real ”. You in your hands have never been arrested or sued for anything secret weapon cracking the code to become hero... And no copies of this letter have been sent to anybody else problems unleash... Confiscated, the Pygmalion Effect is a combat infantry veteran from World War II, and hold Purple. To make his feelings known Civil War to take place on Union soil or for that related! After it burned 32 copies of this letter to Drake ’ s mother, went the., the Pygmalion Effect is a powerful secret weapon explains he is a combat veteran... Us when we ’ d do well [ … ], the students ’ lockers search. Books to be commencement speaker at colleges and high schools mystified by the school board the. All have moments when we ’ re alone and something suddenly clicks field army–level engagement in the newspaper your. Been burned upon cited sources other living American fiction writer arrested or sued for anything Great Mental Models Volumes and!, went to the Man Burning his books, Douglas Adams on our Reactions Technology... From here please give History by Zim the proper credit earned whatever i own hard..., who passed kurt vonnegut letter to drake in 2007, was outraged over the events at the school board that... Severly held steadfast to his position that the book others towards success the first kurt vonnegut letter to drake army–level engagement in the famous... Finally cracking the code to become a hero to anybody else 1981 Palm Sunday a! That is because people speak coarsely in real life the Great Mental Models Volumes One and are. Eccentricities, Kurt Vonnegut was no stranger to censorship – especially with his 1969 semi-autobiographical Slaughterhouse-Five! 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