The Colton school board has put “The Bluest Eye” by Toni Morrison back on the district’s high school curriculum, six months after removing it. PEN America hails the decision. I do too, in my own way, in Wednesday’s column. (I’m honest and admit I haven’t read the book. But I’m all for free expression.)
I link within the column to the Colton reading list for grades 7 to 12; here the link. It may not strike some of you, or most of you, as anything out of the ordinary, especially if you had a California education. Friends have told me about reading, say, “Moby Dick” in high school. As someone with an Illinois education, in a small town, this list boggles my mind. No doubt many of the books are not taught, or only a few pages are photocopied and disseminated, but it’s still far beyond anything given to me to read.
The most ambitious book we read was Mark Twain’s “Connecticut Yankee,” and that was merely an option in an advanced English class, only two of us chose it, and the version we got was abridged!