Throughout the ages, authors have been daring, writing provocative content to get the masses to think. Despite sparking controversy, this type of literature has indeed had an impact on society. Fiction can, after all, create empathy (as I mention here in this video), and make readers see others in a different light.
It can be argued that some controversial books would have been better left unpublished (Mein Kampf, anyone?), while others have their place. Check out this list of 25 of the most controversial books of all time. The Color Purple, Harry Potter, and The Satanic Verses are among those classics which created waves.
I happen to write about touchy subjects, like interfaith relationships (Jews and Muslims? Eek!), particular religious verses, and the Jewish ethnicity (What ethnicity? It’s a religion only!). Do I offend some people? Of course. But why write if not to make the reader stop and think? I write with a purpose. Part of that purpose is entertainment value, but I don’t write for snowflakes and don’t believe it’s the writer’s job to tiptoe around the issues.
That’s my take on it. Now here is an article by author Maria Gibbs, who has addressed the same topic. Take a look at what she has to say in this excellent piece:
SHOULD WE STIFLE OUR CHARACTERS/BOOKS IN CASE WE OFFEND
“More and more I am seeing people say that they are getting bad reviews because they didn’t warn the reader of something that may potentially offend them. A love story that contains an affair or anything that someone may find controversial.
“What is a book?
“A story that is either a reflection on real life or a trip into a fantasy world which has no connection to reality. We will never be able to write 100% to please every reader and what works for one person will rub raw on another…”
Click here to continue reading. I highly recommend you do!
Political Correctness in Fiction (my video rant on the same topic)
D.M. Miller is the author of the interfaith “Heart” series as well as the poetry collection, Dandelion Fuzz and the memoir, Half-Jew: Searching for Identity. The product of an interfaith marriage herself, Miller’s work explores the difficult themes of religion, politics, ethnicity, culture, family, ancestry and love. See her books on Amazon.