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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

"Bamboo Grove" controversy continues


Globe West continues to receive passionate reader responses to two articles (Nov. 12 and Nov. 19) about the controversial book “So Far From the Bamboo Grove,” a memoir about a Japanese family escaping from Korea after World War II.

The Dover-Sherborn Regional School Committee is mulling whether to remove the book from the 6th grade curriculum after complaints that it's too violent for students of that age and it's biased against Koreans.

The book, which has little to say about the Japanese occupation of Korea that preceded the story, was reviewed after more than a dozen parents complained about it.

Kecia Gifford, the parent of a Sherborn 5th-grader, wrote in to say she was “disturbed” by passages she read in the book and felt 6th grade was too young given the content, which includes multiple references to rape. But she also pointed out that the book would not be banned from the school, it would remain in the library.

Katie Berger, an 8th-grader in Medfield, wrote: “Are we the students now not allowed to learn about the Civil Rights Movement, or the Third Reich, or U.S. slavery because they are racist topics? The only way people learn not to repeat history's mistakes is to learn about them.”

Let us know your opinion by posting on the Globe West message board.

-– Lisa Kocian

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