Ban The Perks of Being a Wallflower from schools, says B.C. dad
Kamloops-area father Dean Audet says students shouldn't be reading the bestselling coming-of-age novel
A Kamloops, B.C., father is demanding the school district ban a book his son's high school class is reading because he says it is pornographic and unsuitable for teens.
Dean Audet wants the bookThe Perks of Being a Wallflower pulled off school shelves and banned because he says students in Grade 10 shouldn't be reading a book with content this vulgar.
"Suicide by gunshot, boyfriend punches girl in the face hard, Grade 4 girl letting boys feel her breast, teenage boy having sex with a dog, and it just goes on and on and gets worse from there," says Audet.
"Watching sister and boyfriend having sex, graphic step-by-step instructions on how to masturbate, graphic pornographic conversation, child molestation," he adds.
While Audet finds the book pornographic and vulgar, others have described the novel by American Stephen Chbosky as a coming-of-age novel about an introverted teenager who has trouble controlling his emotions as he struggles to fit in.
Since it was first published by MTV in 1999, the New York Times bestseller has frequently been compared to J.D. Salinger's cult classic The Catcher in the Rye.
It has also been made into a critically-acclaimed movie starring Harry Potter star Emma Watson. The film is being watched in his son's class, and Audet says his son asked to be excused from the viewing.
Despite the book's popularity with young readers and teachers, parents in the U.S. have also attempted to ban the book from schools.
For his part, Audet has asked the Kamloops School Board to pull the book from the curriculum.
"The point is, should we be feeding this to our children in high school in the public school system?" he asks.
The Kamloops/Thompson School District has given Audet's son an alternative book to read, Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan. The book is the third in a series following the adventures of amnesiac, demigod teenager Percy Jackson.
Superintendent Terry Sullivan says, as per its policy, the school district will make a decision on a ban after The Perks of Being a Wallflower is reviewed by an independent committee.
"I've seen too many examples of censorship, which are applied to everyone with respect to books. Many of them are classics," said Sullivan.
With files from the CBC's Brady Strachan