Censorship has shown its ugly face again. Ellen Hopkins was invited to the Teen Lit Festival in Humble, Texas (a suburb of Houston). At the festival teens and Y.A. authors are invited as a way to interact; teens can meet their favorite authors and authors can make their work known. Apparently a few parents found out that Hopkins was going to be there, and since they don’t care for the content of her books, they complained to one of the Humble ISD librarians. This librarian went to the superintendent with the complaints, and ultimately Hopkins was uninvited!
I first heard about this through Ellen Hopkin’s FB post and it made my blood pressure rise. If a parent doesn’t like an author and/or her book that’s okay. It’s a parent’s right to tell her child not to read something. However, it is not right for a parent to ruin a conference for hundreds of teens. Hopkin’s books tell the truth; it may be ugly, but everyone knows the real world isn’t always a pleasant place.
This news has made its way to other authors attending the conference. One such author is Pete Hautman (Invisible, Godless). I have a link to his blog entry expressing his opinion on this matter. I strongly recommend reading it. He along with a few other authors that were invited to TLF are no longer attending the conference in response to this.
P.S. Here is a link to Ellen Hopkin’s thoughts on Pete Hautman’s blog post
P.P.S. Ellen Hopkins posted this article that was written in response to everything going on with Teen Lit Fest. It’s actually pretty humerous 🙂