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  #51  
Old 03-26-2020, 08:10 AM
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Boy was I pissed when I found out what that series [the Chronicles of Narnia] was really about.
How old were you when you read it? (Is this poster still here?) Because I was 12, and it seemed obvious to me, as a non-Christian child living in Christendom.
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Old 03-26-2020, 08:46 AM
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How old were you when you read it? (Is this poster still here?) Because I was 12, and it seemed obvious to me, as a non-Christian child living in Christendom.
Likewise. I was about the same age, non-Christian, but I was never in any doubt about the Christian theme. It didn't bother me, and still doesn't.

I wonder what people have to say about the atheist propaganda in Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials series? I enjoyed the first two books, but I thought it became silly in the third book.
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Old 03-26-2020, 10:28 AM
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Help! Mom! There Are Liberals Under My Bed!
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This full-color illustrated book is a fun way for parents to teach young children the valuable lessons of conservatism. Written in simple text, readers can follow along with Tommy and Lou as they open a lemonade stand to earn money for a swing set. But when liberals start demanding that Tommy and Lou pay half their money in taxes, take down their picture of Jesus, and serve broccoli with every glass of lemonade, the young brothers experience the downside to living in Liberaland.
By the same author we have Help! Mom! Hollywood's in My Hamper!, Help! Mom! The 9th Circuit Nabbed the Nativity!, and Help! Mom! The Swamp is in My School!


Another one:
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The rights of every person, every man, woman, and child, are inalienable; though they are written as the law of the land, our rights transcend all of humanity’s laws. They are tantamount to each individual living their most fulfilled life. The rights that we possess are not uniquely American, but rather natural rights that are possessed by all people. What is uniquely American is the explicit nature with which these rights must be acknowledged at all levels of government. As such, it is the responsibility of all Americans to exercise their rights daily, which means that the Bill of Rights must be a recurring study and part of regular discussion. Learning our rights at a young age is an important step in growing to be a conscious citizen; one that will not only defend their own liberties, but those of their neighbors, friends, community, and strangers around the world. I Know My Rights: A Children's Guide to the Bill of Rights and Individual Liberty presents the original text of the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution, coupled with an accessible and detailed explanation for each law, based in recent case law and scholarly interpretation. This book will provide a basic understanding of the Bill of Rights, as well as a foundation upon which each child can learn from and grow into active, peaceful, and prosperous individuals who seek personal fulfillment and happiness within their own lives and their communities.
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Old 03-26-2020, 11:10 AM
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There’s Struwwelpeter, of course, the classic 19th century German picture book exhorting good little children to eat up all the soup, not play with scissors, nor mock any Africans who happen to be wandering around the neighborhood.

Then there’s Struwwelhitler, in which good little children can enjoy ol’ Schickelgruber getting his comeuppance.

https://www.amazon.com/Struwwelhitle.../dp/3866710143
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  #55  
Old 03-26-2020, 01:11 PM
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This book briefly became a best-seller after Stephen Colbert mentioned it on his show. The Amazon "reviews" are a riot, although some of the more out-there ones are gone.

https://www.amazon.com/My-Parents-Op...2A160E5FF734B0

For a while, the library I volunteer(ed?) at got a lot of those Rush Limbaugh kids' books, both paper and audio. The audio books were almost always still in the shrinkwrap, and the books appeared to have never been opened. I also once saw a book at a thrift store about abortion that was aimed at young children, based on its text, and complete with graphic photos.
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Old 03-26-2020, 01:21 PM
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Likewise. I was about the same age, non-Christian, but I was never in any doubt about the Christian theme. It didn't bother me, and still doesn't.

I wonder what people have to say about the atheist propaganda in Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials series? I enjoyed the first two books, but I thought it became silly in the third book.
As someone moderately versed in Christian theology, it was quite obvious that Pullman is not. A case can be made for atheism but that wasn't it. Like any other heavy-handed didacticism, it killed the story. But then Pullman beat it to death with a sledge hammer and drank its blood.
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Old 03-26-2020, 01:28 PM
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Yet another, and in this case 36 of them: "Left Behind - The Kids."

That's right - THIRTY-SIX volumes.

The adult books were terrible - yes, I tried to read a couple of them - and the theology isn't correct either IMNSHO.
  #58  
Old 03-26-2020, 03:03 PM
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How about the Harry Potter series? It was very pro-human.
  #59  
Old 03-26-2020, 03:27 PM
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When I was a kid in the 1980s, I checked out a book from the public library. I'm sure I selected it purely because it had a picture of a garbage truck on the cover, and I liked trucks. It was a story about a garbage man who started trying to repair and reuse the things people left out on the curb. But ultimately he discovers that it isn't worth the effort, all that stuff is worthless junk and it really should be taken to the landfill. And the lesson in the end was that garbage is actually good, because it can be used to fill in wetlands (they probably said "swamps" in the book) and then we can build houses on them!
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Old 03-26-2020, 04:04 PM
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I read Bread and Dew, mentioned in the OP. It was the only book from Moldova I could find in English when I was reading an author from every country.
  #61  
Old 03-26-2020, 04:13 PM
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Not a book but the 90s children's cartoon series "Captain Planet" is a show a lot of people don't think is propaganda but it 100% is. The base concept is pretty standard for the time, the Spirit of the Earth assembles a team of teen superheroes to fight the "decay" harming the Earth, mainly pollution, overfishing, cutting down forests, corporate greed, the standard 90s kid lessons.

But then the show had some really REALLY out there episodes, such as the episode where you find out overpopulation is a global threat and literally ends with the show telling the viewer their families should only have two children max, and the one that features the Israel/Palestine conflict and says that whole thing could simply be solved it both sides just talking it out.

It was Ted Turner's baby and you can tell since it really reflects the weird "90s Coastal Liberal" views he had.
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Old 03-26-2020, 04:16 PM
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When I was a kid in the 1980s, I checked out a book from the public library. I'm sure I selected it purely because it had a picture of a garbage truck on the cover, and I liked trucks. It was a story about a garbage man who started trying to repair and reuse the things people left out on the curb. But ultimately he discovers that it isn't worth the effort, all that stuff is worthless junk and it really should be taken to the landfill. And the lesson in the end was that garbage is actually good, because it can be used to fill in wetlands (they probably said "swamps" in the book) and then we can build houses on them!
This sounds like a vanity project, written by someone in the industry.
  #63  
Old 03-26-2020, 05:16 PM
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There was a story booklet called "Who Wants to be a Prairie Dog" that was published, in 1948, by the Department of the Interior to be used in teaching Dineh children on the reservations. The premise was that little Indian children who were lazy and preferred herding their family's sheep to going to school, would drop down into prairie dog holes, and become prairie dogs. An interesting aside was that the children that were illustrated in the book wore short hair and "White" clothing, BUT when they turned into prairie dogs, they all wore Dineh clothing and acted "like Injuns".
This one is available on-line.
Hollywood actually attemped to make it into a movie, but it mutated into a game show about winning a million dollars. (This isn't the worst tone shift in Hollywood proje ts.)
  #64  
Old 03-26-2020, 08:44 PM
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Some Japanese kids textbooks present a un-nuanced view of what being Japanese means. "Japanese people eat rice and fish". The unstated assumption there is that this is what distinguishes Japanese people from others. Stupid, but it goes unchallenged and thus remains in many heads into adulthood.
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Old 03-26-2020, 09:09 PM
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Childrens books in English have been very racist against african americans. I've seen them from the 20s and 30s. Speech, names, hairstyles: all degrading propaganda.
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Old 03-27-2020, 10:07 AM
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Childrens books in English have been very racist against african americans. I've seen them from the 20s and 30s. Speech, names, hairstyles: all degrading propaganda.
When I was a little kid in the 1960s, my grandmother was still reading Epaminondus and His Auntie (1907) to my siblings and me. She figured it was a classic she had read to her children in the 20s and 30s, and couldn’t see anything wrong with the title “pickaninny.”

The stories are basically folklorist “Fool Tales,” in which a good-hearted child (or adult) takes instructions too literally and melts the butter, drags the daily loaf through the mud, kills the puppy, etc. More recently the Fool was whitened up and turned into Amelia Bedilia.

The Tale of Little Black Sambo is too good a story to lose; children love to hear about a small boy outwitting the terrifying tigers, and especially out-eating his parents at pancake time. Luckily, a 1990s version called Little Babajiswitched the background from Africa to India — where tigers live, anyhow — and offered non-racist illustrations of the Indian family. And some very funny tigers. It was one of my kids’ favorite bedtime books.
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  #67  
Old 03-27-2020, 10:13 AM
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The Tale of Little Black Sambo is too good a story to lose; children love to hear about a small boy outwitting the terrifying tigers, and especially out-eating his parents at pancake time. Luckily, a 1990s version called Little Babajiswitched the background from Africa to India — where tigers live, anyhow — and offered non-racist illustrations of the Indian family. And some very funny tigers. It was one of my kids’ favorite bedtime books.
Just to clarify, Sambo always took place in India (though sometimes the illustrations made that easy to misunderstand) - that's why it has tigers and bazaars and ghee. The author lived in India for decades and was writing a story about the place she lived.
  #68  
Old 03-27-2020, 10:26 AM
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Speaking of "classics", I was surprised at how pro-imperialist "Babar the Elephant" is.
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Old 03-27-2020, 05:19 PM
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I've seen vintage sheet music with titles like "If The Man In The Moon Was A Coon" and "Watermelon Pickaninnies".

Agatha Christie had a book called "Ten Little N-----ers", later retitled to "Ten Little Indian", and retitled again to "And Then There Were None."
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Old 03-27-2020, 08:59 PM
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I've seen vintage sheet music with titles like "If The Man In The Moon Was A Coon" and "Watermelon Pickaninnies".
Don’t forget Irving Berlin’s “Cohen Owes Me Ninety-Seven Dollars.”

When I first met Eve, she was delighted that I knew that song, and we harmonized on it. Just a pair of goyim mocking the Hebrew brethren.

Although I later sang it to a work buddy, Eddie Rosenthal, and it tickled him pink.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJh1iBaeang
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  #71  
Old 03-28-2020, 07:32 AM
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As a counterpoint to the pro-racism books of our past, one day at the library I picked up a slew of books to read to Kid Cheesesteak who was about 4, one of them was Ruth and the Green Book

Somehow I had grown to adulthood without know what the Green Book was.

So, I'm reading him a story of Ruth and her family's road trip in their brand new car. She's so excited at the beginning, and it unsurprisingly gets into grim territory as they travel into the Jim Crow south.
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Old 03-28-2020, 12:05 PM
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Several books have been written to indoctrinate children on the perils of being vaccinated and the joys of infectious disease, most famously "Melanie's Marvelous Measles" by Stephanie Messenger.
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Old 03-28-2020, 12:41 PM
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To be more precise about what nearwildheaven says in post #69, the Agatha Christie book that is being talked about was originally published in the U.K. under the title Ten Little N-------- and in the U.S. under the title And Then There Were None (in 1939 in both countries). Even in 1939 American publishers knew that the British title was offensive. The title remained the same in the U.K. until 1977, after which it became Ten Little Indians. The last use in the English language of the offensive British title was in 1980, when an Australian edition was published under that title. The last use of Ten Little Indians was in a British edition of 1985. After that it was only published in all English language editions as And Then There Were None. (Editions in other languages are a further problem.) So the problem was always that British publishers didn't seem to understand the offensiveness of the word (and Agatha Christie was never very sensitive to racial matters).
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Old 03-28-2020, 02:56 PM
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Hell, the English were still using the term on television Up through the 1970s. One episode of Fawlty Towers had the Major explaining the difference between “wogs” and “n——-s.”

Besides, “And Then There Were None” is a MUCH better title.
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Old 03-28-2020, 03:11 PM
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A good counterexample that can be appreciated by parents of both right-wing and liberal backgrounds is James Clavell's The Children's Story.

full story online here (PDF)
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Old 03-28-2020, 04:17 PM
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I forgot to include this link to the Wikipedia entry:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/And_Then_There_Were_None
  #77  
Old 03-28-2020, 04:20 PM
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As a counterpoint to the pro-racism books of our past, one day at the library I picked up a slew of books to read to Kid Cheesesteak who was about 4, one of them was Ruth and the Green Book

Somehow I had grown to adulthood without know what the Green Book was.

So, I'm reading him a story of Ruth and her family's road trip in their brand new car. She's so excited at the beginning, and it unsurprisingly gets into grim territory as they travel into the Jim Crow south.
I am more than well aware of that Green Book, but it was, of course, not a propaganda book. The first thing that popped into my mind when I saw your post is Qaddafi's political manifesto, which was absolutely forced upon children.
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Old 03-28-2020, 04:47 PM
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Several books have been written to indoctrinate children on the perils of being vaccinated and the joys of infectious disease, most famously "Melanie's Marvelous Measles" by Stephanie Messenger.
So in this instance we can blame the Messenger...
  #79  
Old 03-28-2020, 04:51 PM
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Speaking of past dictators, in the old country I clearly do remember a grammar book from 1st or second grade from a prestigious Catholic school had, all of the sudden, a picture and sentences about how great Generalissimo Francisco Franco* was and that we all should salute him. Peculiar because it was not in Spain but El Salvador, but not so strange when considering how conservative the elite Catholics were there.

My mother added in my book (after I did not need to take it with me to 3rd grade): "God save us from Franco".

Had to wait about 4 years for that.




* He is still dead.
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Old 03-28-2020, 05:46 PM
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Several books have been written to indoctrinate children on the perils of being vaccinated and the joys of infectious disease, most famously "Melanie's Marvelous Measles" by Stephanie Messenger.
And this one too.

https://www.amazon.com/Sarah-does-no...s%2C162&sr=8-2

Sorry, Sarah, that's not your decision.

I do remember back in the days when tonsillectomy was often considered a rite of passage in childhood, and the books which made it sound like an adventure. I understand why the books were published; it was to make the children less afraid of what was going to happen to them. Now that the procedure is no longer routinely done, I'm seeing less of this, as a library volunteer.
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Old 03-29-2020, 07:52 AM
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All Children's Books are propaganda.
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Old 03-29-2020, 08:22 AM
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All Children's Books are propaganda.
Would you care to elaborate on your theory?
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Old 03-29-2020, 08:38 AM
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Several books have been written to indoctrinate children on the perils of being vaccinated and the joys of infectious disease, most famously "Melanie's Marvelous Measles" by Stephanie Messenger.
Do you suppose she's just writing about Cecilia 's Celebratory CoVid 19?
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Old 03-29-2020, 01:09 PM
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Would you care to elaborate on your theory?
I'm assuming it's based on the "EVERYTHING is political" mindset that the mere fact a children's book is teaching a lesson to someone who may not agree with it is propaganda.
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Old 03-29-2020, 05:51 PM
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I'm assuming it's based on the "EVERYTHING is political" mindset that the mere fact a children's book is teaching a lesson to someone who may not agree with it is propaganda.
No, all modern children's books are intended to be instructional, at the cost of content--ie no fun for the kids.

And I don't care what politics you keep, the term indoctrination is full interchangeable with propaganda.

All in all, it's just another brick in the wall.
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Old 03-29-2020, 06:07 PM
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No one's mentioned Rainbow Fish, aka no tall poppies for kids yet?
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Old 03-30-2020, 01:46 AM
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No, all modern children's books are intended to be instructional, at the cost of content--ie no fun for the kids.

And I don't care what politics you keep, the term indoctrination is full interchangeable with propaganda.

All in all, it's just another brick in the wall.
I'm sure you've done some in-depth research on recent children's books to reach that conclusion.

Here are a couple of lists to start you off:
Best children's books of 2019: from picture books to young adult

26 of the best kids' books of 2019

Which of the 39 books in those lists would you say are propaganda?

And if you say 'all of them' without actually bothering to look at the books, we'll know you're a phoney.
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Old 03-30-2020, 01:59 AM
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Not just a book, but a coloring book!

Long ago I heard a radio interview with John Robbins, son of one of the founders of the Baskin-Robbins chain of ice cream franchises. At the time he was making the rounds for his second book, May All Be Fed. In one portion of the interview he noted how the milk industry used to give schools free crayon-by-numbers coloring books with an interesting series of loaded questions.

For instance, a question would say, "Do you put milk on your breakfast cereal? If not, color all the #3's brown." and the resulting picture would look like a smiling happy man if the responses were pro-beef and it would look more and more like a hideous mis-colored monster for each anti-beef-industry response.

But, hey, those were free activity books, right?



--G!
And Apple was criticized for giving Apple II and MAC computers to schools. Do they still do that?
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Old 03-30-2020, 06:53 AM
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Are there any children's books that aren't propaganda? I don't recall ever coming across any children's books that didn't try to instill a particular outlook in their readers. Old fairy tales are mostly about trying to scare children into certain behaviors, and modern kid's stories almost always have a definite perspective they're trying to instill.

Also, while it's 15 years old and the poster is banned so I don't expect them to respond, the idea that LOTR is an allegory for the Cold War is pretty hard to defend since the books were written before the Cold War was really going (written before 1950, published 1954). Writing an allegory of something that hasn't happened is a bit difficult.
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Old 03-30-2020, 07:10 AM
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Is there any book whatsoever, for adults or children, that doesn't reflect its author's outlook, worldview, interests, etc.?

But that's not propaganda.

Some children's books have 'little moral lessons', but many don't. Someone who considers a book that has a message of 'play nicely and share your toys' to be propaganda, must have weird idea of what propaganda is.

There certainly are propaganda books, but not too many of them, and they tend to be promoted only by people with specific religious or political views.
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Old 03-30-2020, 07:28 AM
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My six year old grandson is nuts for those Captain Underpants books and although he has read a couple of them to me I'm forced to say I fail to see any propaganda or moral lesson in any of them. The protagonists seem to be to be simple agents of chaos, who through dumb luck fail to do anyone any permanent harm, and often accidentally do some good. Kind of like the Hulk in that TV show with Bill Bixby.
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Old 03-30-2020, 07:56 AM
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Is there any book whatsoever, for adults or children, that doesn't reflect its author's outlook, worldview, interests, etc.?

But that's not propaganda.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Merriam-Webster
2: the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person
3: ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further one's cause or to damage an opposing cause
I'm using the dictionary definition of propaganda, and the vast majority of children's books press strongly for supporting or opposing a particular cause.

Note that this isn't just something that I'm doing, a few uick examples:
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/...tical-message/
https://hubpages.com/literature/rainbow-fish-socialism
https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=489566


Quote:
Some children's books have 'little moral lessons', but many don't. Someone who considers a book that has a message of 'play nicely and share your toys' to be propaganda, must have weird idea of what propaganda is.

There certainly are propaganda books, but not too many of them, and they tend to be promoted only by people with specific religious or political views.
If, as you assert, the majority of children's books are not propaganda, it should be absolutely trivial for you to answer my post by naming some that are not, and the fact that you are unable or unwilling to do so is pretty telling. You won't or can't name a book that has a message of 'play nicely and share your toys' that isn't propaganda, but expect us to believe that such books are so common that it's downright foolish to question whether they're even around.
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Old 03-30-2020, 08:11 AM
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My six year old grandson is nuts for those Captain Underpants books and although he has read a couple of them to me I'm forced to say I fail to see any propaganda or moral lesson in any of them. The protagonists seem to be to be simple agents of chaos, who through dumb luck fail to do anyone any permanent harm, and often accidentally do some good. Kind of like the Hulk in that TV show with Bill Bixby.
According to at least some conservatives, the fact that the series includes a gay character who goes on to marry his domestic partner counts as pro-homosexual propaganda, and the book has been expunged from some libraries on that basis. Is showing paths to how to behave as an adult propaganda, and does showing only 'straight married with kid' (like older books do) or including 'gay marriage' count as propaganda?

https://www.latimes.com/books/jacket...027-story.html
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Old 03-30-2020, 09:49 AM
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According to at least some conservatives, the fact that the series includes a gay character who goes on to marry his domestic partner counts as pro-homosexual propaganda, and the book has been expunged from some libraries on that basis. Is showing paths to how to behave as an adult propaganda, and does showing only 'straight married with kid' (like older books do) or including 'gay marriage' count as propaganda?

https://www.latimes.com/books/jacket...027-story.html
I wouldn't call gay married people propaganda. Gay people exist, I think any reasonable person would agree to that, and they do get married. It reflects reality, not some desirable outcome.
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Old 03-30-2020, 11:37 AM
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If, as you assert, the majority of children's books are not propaganda, it should be absolutely trivial for you to answer my post by naming some that are not, and the fact that you are unable or unwilling to do so is pretty telling. You won't or can't name a book that has a message of 'play nicely and share your toys' that isn't propaganda, but expect us to believe that such books are so common that it's downright foolish to question whether they're even around.
I've posted two lists of the best children's books of 2019. I'd say none of them are propaganda.

Which ones do you think are propaganda and why? Or would that mean you'd actually have to do some work and some thinking to justify your claim?
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Old 03-30-2020, 12:53 PM
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Don’t forget Irving Berlin’s “Cohen Owes Me Ninety-Seven Dollars.”

When I first met Eve, she was delighted that I knew that song, and we harmonized on it. Just a pair of goyim mocking the Hebrew brethren.

Although I later sang it to a work buddy, Eddie Rosenthal, and it tickled him pink.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJh1iBaeang
Wait. Eve Golden is a shiksa?

Who nu?

Last edited by kaylasdad99; 03-30-2020 at 12:53 PM.
  #97  
Old 03-30-2020, 01:34 PM
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I've posted two lists of the best children's books of 2019. I'd say none of them are propaganda.

Which ones do you think are propaganda and why? Or would that mean you'd actually have to do some work and some thinking to justify your claim?
Looking at your first page, the second book The Fate of Fausto is specifically a morality tale in which a character who is too full of himself gets his comeuppance when he goes one step too far in trying to get the natural world to acknowledge his supposed greatness. As an Amazon review says: "It is the sea, however, that teaches Fausto his lesson and leaves the reader with a hard-to-forget moral. Jeffers closes the story with an anecdote about the importance of knowing when what you already have is enough, ending the book with a direct hit in case (somehow) you miss the message through the story of Fausto himself."

Skimming down, Katherine Rundell’s The Good Thieves is about how taking the law into your own hands when you can't get justice from the system is good. From a review I found:"I love the concept of stealing back what is ours or stealing from thieves! The story revolves around Vita and her friends who have decided to steal back her late grandmother’s precious jewellery. ‘Justice’, Grandpa (Vita’s Grandpa Jack Welles) wrote in his letter ,’seems to be only for those who can afford it’."

Nicola Skinner’s Bloom is according to the page you linked: "A riotous, original and timely reminder that sometimes rules are made to be broken."

At this point, there's no real point in diving deeper, because I've got good specific examples. The three books I noted are definitely pushing a specific moral lesson, which I would say qualifies them as propaganda and not just showing kids an 'instinctive' worldview (as the OP distinguishes it). I don't disagree with any of them, in fact from the brief reviews they all look like something I'd be happy to give as a gift to a kid, but I don't think it's legitimate to say that propaganda isn't propaganda if it supports your own viewpoint.

This is what I mean when I talk about kid's books being propaganda - the vast majority of such books are trying to advocate that the reader should embrace or reject a particular world view. While there are certainly some books or stories that don't (especially non-fiction), actually finding them takes significant effort. And if you're going to say that a book specifically teaching a moral or ethical lesson is not propaganda, then several of the examples cited earlier in this thread also don't qualify.
  #98  
Old 03-30-2020, 01:41 PM
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I wouldn't call gay married people propaganda. Gay people exist, I think any reasonable person would agree to that, and they do get married. It reflects reality, not some desirable outcome.
It reflects a recent reality that quite a few people want to undo, and a reality that's only true in a fraction of the world, not universally. It is very clearly sending the message 'being gay is a normal part of being human' which, while I agree with it, is very clearly trying to promote a specific viewpoint. And pretty much everyone who writes propaganda uncoerced thinks that all reasonable people would agree with whatever they're writing, after all they are reasonable and agree with it! The fact that you or I agree with the point of a piece of propaganda doesn't make it not propaganda.
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