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Briar Rose by Jane Yolen Essay - 741 Words - StudyMode
YOLEN: I think most of the time individuals or groups who want to censor or burn books do not read the books. Or do not read them all the way through. Rather they are on an action list of folks who will respond as they are told to do. Reading a book -- and understanding it -- takes time, attention, honesty, clarity, and an open mind. None of these are definitional as far as book censors go. There are many books I do not like and would not recommend to like-minded readers, but I do not condemn them unread. And I do not issue blanket statements that no one else should be allowed to read them. Nor do I advocate throwing them in the trash or burning them.
YOLEN: I wrote "Briar Rose" as an adult book, and actually gave no thought to readers who might find parts of the book offensive. My attention was entirely on the story. I think someone who finds offensive a book in which a main character is gay or Jewish should not be reading the book in the first place.
Structure Briar Rose - Jane Yolen Essay - 992 Words
JANE YOLEN: "Briar Rose" was written and published as an adult book but has gotten into many high school and college courses as a core text. Because "Briar Rose" has, in fact, been so adopted by young adult readers, it has been in its new Starscape line of Young Adult books, with a brand new cover (in March 2002).
In "Briar Rose," Jane Yolen uses the tale of "Sleeping Beauty" as a point of reference for a haunting Holocaust mystery - within a romance - within a compelling fairy tale - within a novel which will intrigue young as well as adult readers of all ages.
Who else but a prolific master storyteller like Jane Yolen, whom "Newsweek," her colleagues, readers, and fans refer to, with respectful admiration, as "America's Hans Christian Andersen," has the infinite wisdom, skill, and sensitivity to have created this unusual and poignant novel? To make truths too heinous to accept speak for themselves as facts in a contemporary fairy tale, is an ingeniously subliminal way of imparting a cautionary tale about the Holocaust to teenage readers, and of reinforcing its lessons of man's inhumanity to man, for adult readers.
Essays and criticism on Jane Yolen's Briar Rose - Critical Essays
YOLEN: The book had practically no reviews in the Jewish press, though "Devil's Arithmetic" won all the Jewish book awards. But "Briar Rose" was widely reviewed in the gay press. It won several awards (not Jewish, not gay) and still sells briskly. It is currently being translated into (I think) Russian and being considered by German publishers. I think there are other translations.
YOLEN: The homosexual content is slight compared to "homosexual" books. That is, there are no real sex scenes, and one bedroom scene that is really about politics, not sex. But I did not make up the pink triangle camps. "Briar Rose" deals pretty directly in one section with the infamous "Pink Triangle camps" in which the Nazis' incarcerated known or suspected homosexuals. In fact the "Prince" character is a gay man -- or so it seems at first.
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