Go Ask Alice

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Date: 1998

Region: North America

Subject: Language

Medium: Literature, Education


Artist: Go Ask Alice, author anonymous

Confronting Bodies: School Principal, the mother of a student

Dates of Action: 1998

Location: A middle school in Tiverton, Rhode Island

Description of Artwork: The book is the diary of an adolescent's struggles with drug addiction and its tragic consequences

The Incident: Eighth grade students were reading Go Ask Alice as a class assignment when their teacher collected the books from her students, on orders from the principal who had never read the book. He had received a complaint from a student's mother who objected to the language in the book, after which he demanded that the books be collected immediately from the students and also removed from the library. The principal's actions violated the district's complaint policies and procedures.

Results of Incident: A review committee examined the matter and decided to return the book to the library. The committee was also to consider returning the book to the classroom.

Source: NCAC