Thursday, August 13, 2009

August 13, 2009

    The New York Times reports a story today which should get some good arguments going.  Do you remember when a Danish newspaper a few years ago published a dozen caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad?  Other papers picked it up;  riots broke out in the Middle East and Africa--Muslims called the cartoons blasphemous and, the Times says, at least  200 people were killed.      Now, Yale University Press is publishing a book about the cartoons, but the book won't show them.  The University decided to drop the cartoons and some other proposed illustrations which depicted the Prophet.      Yale consulted some two dozen experts from scholars to terror experts.  They unanimously recommended against showing the cartoons in the book.  The director of the Press told the Times that "there was no question" about what to do.      But wait a minute.  Yale could decide not to publish the book and nobody could argue with that;  publishers reject manuscripts all the time.  But to publish a book about the cartoons and the controversy they caused without including them  seems a little like publishing a book about, say, Lindbergh's historic solo flight across the Atlantic without mentioning the plane.  I mean, if the book is about the cartoons, why not show them?  One scholar withdrew his supportive blurb for the book, calling the decision "frankly idiotic."      I'm with him.  What do you think?       
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

1 comment:

George Kluber said...

While I can agree with Yale's unfortunately sensible decision to not publish the cartoons, it does seem strange to write a book about illustrated items and then not show them. The subject of the book could only be about the process they went through in taking their stand. It would seem to be the subject of a short article rather than a book.