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Mark Twain's Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn: The NewSouth Edition Paperback – February 1, 2011

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About the Author

Dr. Alan Gribben cofounded the Mark Twain Circle of America, compiled Mark Twain's Library: A Reconstruction, and recently coedited Mark Twain on the Move: A Travel Reader. Gribben has written numerous essays about Mark Twain's life and image. He teaches on the English faculty of Auburn University at Montgomery.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 450 pages
  • Publisher: NewSouth Books; Original edition (February 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1588382672
  • ISBN-13: 978-1588382672
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #361,772 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mark Twain (1835-1910) was an American humorist, satirist, social critic, lecturer and novelist. He is mostly remembered for his classic novels The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Craig Boehman on February 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
Length: 4:39 Mins
Open Letter to NewSouth Books
In regards to censoring a Mark Twain classic

January 5, 2010

Dear Randall Williams and Suzanne La Rosa, co-owners of NewSouth Books;

Censorship in any form, however benign in appearance, however easier on the ears and eyes, however sincere in intention - violates the natural endowment of free expression. Your publication of Mark Twain's classic in censored form will send the wrong signals to the publishing industry, the wrong message to young readers in public schools. Enlightened minds are not nourished by Orwellian safeguards.

On your website you state: "A new edition of Mark Twain's Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, forthcoming from NewSouth Books in mid-February, does more than unite the companion boy books in one volume, as the author had intended."

Let's examine the last part of your proclamation - "as the author had intended." As a Mark Twain enthusiast, I highly doubt he would have intended for you to take it upon yourselves to censor his work. True, he had intended to publish the two stories in one volume. But this doesn't grant you the moral authority to step in and replace 'the N-word' with 'slave' (including their plural companions). In effect, you're claiming he would have intended for you to sanitize racial slurs on behalf of two ethnic groups so that you could publish his two stories in one volume.

Secondly, making use of Twain scholar, Dr. Alan Gribben, and his "preemptive censorship" doctrine doesn't excuse yourselves from the fact that you and your publishing company have now embarked on your own rafting adventure down the Mighty Mississippi of Censorship. According to Dr.
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23 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Matt McHugh on March 5, 2011
Format: Paperback
Let's get one thing straight... this Gribben-NewSouth edition exists for one and one purpose only: to make those parties money. This is not about censorship or education or sensitivity or any such weighty issues, either noble or misguided. It's about profiteering. It's about a publisher and an aging scholar who realized they can whip out an expurgated edition of Twain's work to sell to grade schools wary of controversial language... and no one, dead or alive, can stop them.

I have no problem with a teacher who wants to introduce younger students to a classic work, and chooses to skip age-inappropriate passages. I also have no problem with a commercial publisher who modifies a public domain work to suit such a purpose -- provided they clearly brand the product as an ADAPTATION of an author's original. Gribben and NewSouth did not do that. They are marketing this edition as the work of Mark Twain (note how they chose to title this beginning with the author's name), and it simply is not. What's at stake here is the integrity of our literary heritage when any yahoo can grab a classic text off Project Gutenberg, do a find-and-replace, and sell that without disclosure -- introducing alternate versions to the public, undermining the authenticity of the original. This is exactly what Gribben and NewSouth, a scholar and a publisher who ought to know better, are doing here. And they're doing it for one and one reason only: money.

You want to teach Huck Finn to 4th graders and skip over the n-word? Fine. Send me an e-mail and I'll print you out an edited edition for free... with a big "This version has been modified from the original" on the cover and in the footer of every page. Don't financially reward Alan Gribben and NewSouth Books for grave-robbing Mark Twain's work and pretending it was for your protection.

- mm
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 5, 2011
Format: Paperback
Those, who forget their history will be doomed to make the same mistakes.
N-... has a different emotional connotation, than slave.
Which reflects different on the character/ content, who uses it.
As a German I am very, very cautious not to forget history, nor the language that was used- because it is a mark that makes me never forget to think: Never again!,

I would give my children always the original version!
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Melton on November 11, 2012
Format: Paperback
The reviews listed here refer to the edited edition rather than the original text edition. Professor Gribben and NewSouth have provided both the original and the edited versions for readers, both edited by one of the most dedicated scholars of Mark Twain of our time. Providing both versions allows all readers to approach Twain's work and, indeed, carry on their own discussions concerning racism and censorship, if they so desire. Both extremes in any discussions of Twain's work can point to valid points--both the pain associated with its language and the importance of protecting free speech are vitally important. Perhaps Gribben's edited version may provide a useful transition to a point in our history and our reading wherein both constituencies can fully appreciate the power and depth of Twain's work (Huck and Tom) beyond the presence or absence of certain words. Our culture protects younger readers from direct interaction with human depravity as part of cultural standards; we edit films for transmission on prime time television--where's the outrage? There is little because the full versions are readily available for viewers who choose them, as they should be. Gribben's edition serves that same purpose; when readers and teachers so choose, they can engage a softer version of a text. Yes, they do not get the full impact, but they may not be ready for that impact and could very well be ready for the balance of the mosaic that Twain creates. Moreover, they make that choice fully informed by Gribben's introduction. When they are intellectually and emotionally ready for more, they know where to find it.
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Mark Twain's Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn: The NewSouth Edition
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