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114 of 116 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars And the Star-belly sneetches had 5 stars upon thars...
Although best loved for children's literature, it is often noted that Dr. Seuss wrote about social issues. This is one of his best, but least cited, examples. This book is a collection of 4 shorter-than-usual Dr. Seuss stories, but ones with quite significant social meaning.
The first, and most well known of the book, is the Sneetches. It is a story of a society of...
Published on December 20, 2000 by L C

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed
Print is too small to read and won't expand without a Kindle HD . Very disappointed , it's a waste of money without spending more money on a new kindle.
Published 10 months ago by Troy Petersen


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114 of 116 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars And the Star-belly sneetches had 5 stars upon thars..., December 20, 2000
By 
L C "lc70" (Binghamton, NY United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
Although best loved for children's literature, it is often noted that Dr. Seuss wrote about social issues. This is one of his best, but least cited, examples. This book is a collection of 4 shorter-than-usual Dr. Seuss stories, but ones with quite significant social meaning.
The first, and most well known of the book, is the Sneetches. It is a story of a society of haves and have-nots (imagine that!), in which access to the goodies of life are determined by whether or not you have a star on your belly. Read into it what you will. Whatever you make of it, it is certainly a commentary on racial, gender, or any number of other social categories! The story's strength is that it shows just how arbitrary and constructed these categories are. Features -- such as a star, but also skin color, gendered attributes, etc etc -- can be used to define people as dominant and powerful, or repressed and marginalized. What is at issue is not which characteristics are used to delineate people into specific social categories or identities, but how people marginalize others by playing up those definitions...
The Zax is a cute little story, which teaches us that compromise is quite important. Too many Daves is equally short and cute, although its meaning is less obvious. I see it as a cry for individualism. Could just be a cute story...
Finally, "What was I Scared Of?" is another really good story with a social meaning -- again read into it as you will. In this story, there is a pair of pale green pants which has no one inside of it. The main character is afraid of them, but only because he never bothered to find out about them... what they were about. In fact, the empty green pants are just as afraid of him as he is of them! When they both realize they are pretty much the same, once you stood face to face with the other.
Five Stars I do give it! Five Stars Upon Thars!
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You'll wear out the book before you get tired reading it., March 22, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
This is definetly one of Dr. Seuss' best. Four stories with messages so subtle and solutions so obvious that both adult and child will enjoy them again and again. Time (and repitition) has not dimmed any of their charm. The story of The Sneetches focuses on prejudice. Perhaps the most subtle of all Dr. Seuss stories, it demonstrates the silliness of stereotypes and what happens to those who subscribe to them. The story of The Zax tells the story of two stubborn and inflexible Zax. And what happens when they happen to run into each other. Too Many Daves is one mother's story of naming all twenty-three of her children Dave. But my favorite it What Was I Scared Of? It's a not very scary story of seeing a pair of "pale green pants with nobody, inside them". And what to do if you should see them.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read to Your Child to Develop Bonding and Intellect!, August 14, 2000
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
Researchers constantly find that reading to children is valuable in a variety of ways, not least of which are instilling a love of reading and improved reading skills. With better parent-child bonding from reading, your child will also be more emotionally secure and able to relate better to others. Intellectual performance will expand as well. Spending time together watching television fails as a substitute.
To help other parents apply this advice, as a parent of four I consulted an expert, our youngest child, and asked her to share with me her favorite books that were read to her as a young child. The Sneetches and Other Stories was one of her picks.
One of the reasons I liked to read Dr. Seuss stories to all of my children was that they contain up-lifting moral messages. In The Sneetches, the lesson is tolerance of those who are different from you. In The Zax, cooperation is encouraged. In Too Many Daves, individuality is espoused. What Was I Scared of? looks at the irrational bases of many of our fears.
The stories are also wonderful because they are humorous, have fun poems, and the drawings are very interesting and unusual.
The moral lesson in The Sneetches is put together in a very clever way. The story starts with two types of Sneetches, those with stars on their tummies and those without. The former are the higher status group. Then, Sylvester McMonkey McBean came to town with machines that could add stars. He quickly got rich making all the Sneetches look alike. The high-class Sneetches didn't like that, so they paid to have the stars taken off. And so on it went, until McBean had all of the money. Then, the Sneetches finally got smart and treated everyone alike, whether or not they had stars. As you can see, this makes anyone who holds onto small differences as being important look silly (whether based on something one is born with, or perhaps even based on something one can buy like athletic sneakers). Ah, a great story!
The Zax get so caught up on who is right that the world passes them by. In fact, a whole road and a city are built right over them as they stand firm against the other in the sand. Such a lovely counter-thought that is for stubborn children to learn!
Too Many Daves reminds me of a family I met where the father was named Bruce and had several sons named Bruce. It was most confusing when they were all around. We have a bit of the same problem in my family where there are four Dons in three generations. Everyone in my family lobbies against any more Dons!
What Was I Scared of! was my daughter's least favorite story in this book. I think that was because the scary parts last for many dark-looking pages. The resolution that the scary looking pants are just as frightened as you are takes a long time to develop. You may find that your child will like this story at an older age than the other stories in the book. It's the last one, so it's easy to stop just before it.
Now, having read (or reread) these stories, ask yourself what misconceptions you have about the way the importance of how things are. If you act the opposite of any of these stories, your child may find you a little hypocritical. Cure those little faults before you fall in your child's eyes!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Sneetches by Dr. Seuss, November 18, 2004
A Kid's Review
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
The Sneetches, written by Dr. Seuss, is an outstanding story. In this story the plain belly Sneetches are left out of all the activities that the Sneetches with stars on their bellies do. All the plain belly Sneetches wanted to do was join in and feel welcome, to have fun, and not be left out in the dark. One day a man came with a machine to add stars to the plain belly Sneetches' bellies. The Sneetches were delighted, but the star belly Sneetches were not. Since the man was a very devious man he had a solution for the Sneetches with stars on their bellies.

Dr. Seuss's story of the Sneetches is descriptive, giving the reader a clear image. Even though I am in 7th grade and the reading is easy, there is a profound moral to this story. I would rate it 5 out 5 stars.

~ Jenny ~
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Source for Teaching About Tolerance of Diversity!, March 5, 1999
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
"Ronald remember, when you are out walking, you walk past a sneetch of that sort without talking. Keep your snoot in the air and remember to snort. We have no touch whatever with the PLAIN bellied sort!" To have a star on your belly once made you the BETTER sneetch. Then an inventor comes to town who could put stars on the PLAIN-bellied sneetches...for the right price. Now, to seperate them once again, the star-bellies paid a great price to have their stars removed...until one day they realized that it was just plain silly to go on this way: Star or No-star had no true basis in defining who you are. Fantastic lesson in tolerance of diversity!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Treasure!, November 16, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
These creative stories teach lessons in unexpected ways. The Sneetches learn to accept their differences, while another story (about green pants with nobody inside them) teaches that fear is mostly a reaction to the unknown, and many things that we fear are harmless. This is Dr. Seuss at his best- funny, far-out, and wise.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Captivating a true representation of the wrongs of prejudice, December 23, 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
Dr. Seuss has well established himself as a wise and entertaining hero to america's youth! This story goes a long way to show the ignorance and downright silly view of prejudice! You learn how being unique and different shouldn't change the person you are! You also get a chance to seem some fine rhyme scheme and well planned storyline! In my humble opinion this is one of the top children's books in this or any other century! He rivals blake and of course Grim in his very amusing and high quality literary pursuits!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fighting Ignorance., April 24, 2003
By 
machievelli "machievelli" (Trapped in Chinese Fortune Cookie Factory) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
If you are a racist, umm, I mean Star Belly Sneetch, you should buy and read this book. It will simplify your ignorance to the point where even you might be able to understand the implications of your own racism.
If you are not a racist, you should buy this book. It will simplify racists to the point that you will give a hardy chuckle -- and wish that the good old doctor could have lived forever . . . .
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Only Dr. Seuss could teach a basic truth with so much fun!, March 20, 1998
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
"What was I scared of?", the last story in this book, has long been my favorite Dr. Seuss story. I read it aloud as a child. Now it is one of my son's favorites. Dr. Seuss explores scary things like the dark, people or things that aren't familiar, and the idea that it doesn't work to try and run or hide, all within a silly story of green pants with nobody inside them. The sneetches and their struggle to be elite makes any number of statements about our society in a way that is simple for young minds to understand. And the stories about the stubborn Zax and the mother who named all her sons Dave turn words into an amusement park. Definitely one of Dr. Seuss' best.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pale green pants with nobody inside 'em, April 24, 2006
This review is from: The Sneetches and Other Stories (Hardcover)
When I was a kid, the very last story in this book scared the hell out of me. No, really. It's called "What Was I Afraid Of" and it's about a pair of pale green pants with nobody inside 'em. I spent many nights both horrified and fascinated by that concept. I swear it's why I write the morbid stuff I write today.

Of course, I know now that Seuss was only trying to teach his readers that what we fear are things we don't recognize. Seuss is like that. With his acid trip art and jaunty, rhyming narratives, it's easy to get lost in a story and forget the moral. So much the better.

This book, and others like it, is as much for adults as it is for children. I've bought several copies of "The Sneetches and Other Stories" for nieces and the young children of friends. I do it for the kids, of course, but I always give it another read before handing it over.

Of the Suess books, this is my favorite. Of course, I'm all grown up now. I only think about those pale, green pants in the darkest months when I'm alone and my imagination is particularly Suessified.
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The Sneetches and Other Stories
The Sneetches and Other Stories by Dr. Seuss (Hardcover - August 12, 1961)
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