Silent Reading Time
On a wet and cold Thursday lunchtime protestors gathered outside Unity Books in Wellington to pointedly not voice their displeasure at the interim ban of Ted Dawe’s Into the River. Roughly 25 people joined together in a silent reading of Dawes’ novel.
On Monday, following a complaint by Family First, the Film and Literature Board of Review imposed an Interim Restriction Order on the book. Into The River had previously been classified R14, then recently reclassified as unrestricted. The Interim Restriction Order bans the distribution or exhibition of the book until the Board makes a further decision on its classification [FAQ].
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Many of the protestors had bound their books in brown paper, some bearing the handwritten titles of other books which have faced censorship in New Zealand including The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan and J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye.
Wellington Author Elizabeth Knox was in attendance, as was Green Party MP Gareth Hughes.
The silent reading in Wellington was accompanied by similar events in Auckland and Dunedin. Auckland Bookshop Time Out this week created a new window display comprised of previously banned books.
NZ Book Council on Twitter: