The always sharp and caustically funny A.L. Kennedy picks ten controversial books for you lucky readers to ponder:
“Taking offence at books is a centuries old tradition. This may concern a question of personal taste, political expediency, or a desire to guard the malleable from dreadful things that they might take to. Plato wanted Homer kept from immature readers, Caligula was keen to suppress The Odyssey in case the Greek style freedoms it suggested caught on. What follows is a list of books which trouble, which are awkward, and many of which have offended at some point – although, Lord knows, not one of them leaped into an unwilling reader’s hand and forced them to study every line. My aim is not to offend but to illustrate that freedom of the imagination is something we sacrifice only at great risk and that sometimes we may be prepared to resist real evil by meeting its fictional self.”
See her list here. And what would you have picked?