The all-around pleasant person in Hollywood Tom Hanks has blasted book publishers for rewriting classics because they are afraid the antiquated passages may upset new readers.
Hanks, who was named Forbes’ most trustworthy celebrity in 2014 for his reliable image, is promoting his second book, The Making of Another Major Motion Picture Masterpiece.
He spoke on all things literary.
According to Penguin, his book is a hugely ambitious story of the making of a colossal, star-studded, multimillion-dollar superhero action film, and the humble comic book that encouraged it all.
As the saying goes, write about what one understands.
Anyway, during his interview with the BBC’s Mark Lawson, the actor turned novelist had a quarrel with book publishers.
Classic literature, according to Hanks, should not be changed or edited to match present tastes.
Rather, they should be left alone.
Hanks remarked that he is of the opinion that they’re all grown-ups here, and they understand the time, place, and when these things were written.
And it’s not difficult to say, ‘That doesn’t quite fly right now, does it?’ So, rather than having someone determine what everyone may or may not be upset by, let all trust their own sensitivities.
People should have the choice to select whatever media they consume, according to the Forrest Gump star.
He remarked, that let him decide what he is and is not bothered by.
He then said he would be against reading any book from any era that says ‘abridged due to modern sensitivities’.
Hanks’ remarks follow multiple cases of censorship in classic literature.
Penguin, under the Puffin label, which distributes Roald Dahl’s works, has announced the production of an alternative classic collection that would “keep the author’s classic text in print.”
This follows a pushback from those who opposed the plan to modify the texts.
In 2020, they engaged sensitivity writers and collaborated with the children’s literary group Inclusive Minds to revisit Dahl’s works and revise the author’s wording so that the novels “can continue to be enjoyed by all today.”
Along with Dahl, Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels will be altered to safeguard current readers from the original books’ language.
Each edition will now have the following disclaimer: “This book was written at a time when terms and attitudes that might be considered offensive by modern readers were commonplace.”