Calls for 50 Shades Book-Burning

A charity in the North of England which helps women who have been victims of abuse is calling for copies of the hugely popular Fifty Shades trilogy to be burned in protest at what is seen as the violent and degrading treatment of the female characters.  Clare Phillipson of Wearside Women In Need claims that the book portrays domestic violence as sexy and is angry that libraries in the region are using public money to buy additional copies of the book to meet public demand.

I haven’t read the books, they really don’t appeal to me.  Reports I’ve seen have given me the impression that they are badly written pseudo-porn and frankly if I’m going to read a pornographic novel I at least want it to be well written.  Having said that I know a lot of women who have loved the books and would recommend them.

The idea however of burning books is absolutely abhorrent to me.  I don’t like the idea of books which glamourise violence or misogyny but my response to that is just not to buy or read them not to commit wanton acts of violence.  How dare this woman decide just because she doesn’t like a book she can behave in such a manner?  And where does it end? Will we be standing back while people burn the Harry Potter books because they glorify witchcraft? Or the Tales of the City books which glamourise homosexuality and drug-taking? What about books that put forward a theory of evolution which has no basis in scientific fact?

There’s one thing in this world worse than bad books and that’s the idea of burning those bad books.

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