Sixteen years of Treehouse talk

Sixteen years of Treehouse talk

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Quote for the Day: Virginia Haviland on dumbed-down books

"We must all recognize that factors other than word count-the look of the page, the space between lines, the amount of illustration and size of margins-contribute to making a book easy to read.

"Again we may ask whether we are being attracted to fool’s gold by a false snob appeal of the term 'classic,' if we accept abridgements and watering-down of texts because we believe that the slow or lazy child must read Alice in Wonderland or Treasure Island in one form or another. Is it not dishonest to allow children to think they are truly reading the classics when they read them in abbreviated form?"

--Virginia Haviland, "Search for the real thing: Among the “millions and billions” of books," Library Journal, 1961. Quoted in "Initiative and Influence: The Contributions of Virginia Haviland to Children’s Services, Research, and Writing,"  by Karen Patricia Smith.

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