Anastasia – Steele versus Krupnik

You’ve heard  of Anastasia Steele, but who’s Anastasia Krupnik, you ask, querulous dear Blogworms? 🙂

Well, they both belong to works of fiction, of which both are the female leads/protagonists.

They both have an intelligence about them that has a smidgeon of innocence, which can sometimes be sweetly disarming, but also sometimes sourly disappointing.

They both are sticklers for English Literature and both go into serial-monologue modes in their respective narratives.

Both characters come from middle-income backgrounds and get baffled by the ostentatious show of all things expensive and ‘classy’.

Both have the same first name (obviously) and both have been in the news (well, under the ‘Books’ section, at least) for (seemingly) provocative reasons.

This is where the similarities end and the differences begin… 

Anastasia Steele is a fictional character from E.L James’ ‘Mummy Porn’ trilogy by the name of Fifty Shades (Vintage, 2012).

Anastasia Krupnik, however, is a fictional character from a series of short novels (first ed. Lions, 1979) for teenage girls, by Lois Lowry.

So, guess which of these two books has been banned? I’ll give you a couple of moments to ponder…

1

2

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Okay, it stands to reason, doesn’t it?

If the Fifty Shades trilogy is currently topping the best-selling book charts worldwide, it can’t have been banned- which means the novel for teens has been banned then.

So, what? I hear you ask.

Well, as someone who’s grown up reading the Krupnik series, as that same someone who lost the books to dust, mites and yellowed-ness, and wanted to update her bookshelf with nice, new copies (not the hand-me-downs available on Amazon, thankyouverymuch!), only to find that the book is banned and not even on sale online; it is quite upsetting!

I mean, even Satanic Verses, by Salman Rushdie is available to buy in countries which allow the book to be sold!

Now, I’m not one for baseless allegations, or similar time-wasting activities; all I’m trying to drive at are these following points/questions:-

1. Has E.L James read the Krupnik series and felt inspired to create her own version of Anastasia, you know, a similar sort of personality, but with the sexual wildness added on?  Or are the similarities just similarities?

2. The Krupnik series was banned because some of its content was accused of provoking young girls to think of things they ‘shouldn’t be’ thinking of, e.g. puberty, growing pains, teenage crushes on teachers. The content outraged some over-protective parents enough to get the whole series banned! ( See this link for additional insight: http://forbookssake.net/2010/09/28/banned-books-anastasia-by-lois-lowry/)

3. If ‘Mummy Porn’ can make mega bucks, if several teenage vampire series of books (which has more adult and sexual content that any sensible parent would desire) can be sold everywhere, why can’t Anastasia Krupnik and her comparatively innocent story takes its righteous place on the shelves of bookshops again? If the counter-argument to this is there’s not much of a market, does that mean child-like innocence is ‘not cool’ or worse, ‘not-for-sale’ any more????

If this is the case, then what kind of hell, I mean, world, do we live in, I ask you?!

4 Comments

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  • Sudakshina Posted 17th October 2012 9:27 pm

    Thank you for your comment, Malobika. 🙂

    I wouldn’t go as far as saying that reading has become ‘old-fashioned’ as there are many, many bookworms still out there; the new book review site,Goodreads, indicates so. However, yes, the very physical act of actually picking up a book and reading it has indeed waned, thanks to devices like Kindle, Nook, etc. If ‘Lolita’ can be categorised as porn, then what is Harry Potter- superstition?! These name games are silly but not powerful enough to kill reading off the charts. Maybe new technologies could be a dampener though…

  • Malobika Chatterjee Posted 17th October 2012 12:58 pm

    I guess our days of candle light have been replaced by solar lighting and the like. The fact that reading even exists sometimes seems so old fashioned as to be positively astounding! There are those who would even categorise ‘Lolita’ as porn these days……. So, three cheers for the reading habit — and long may it survive

    Malobika Chatterjee
    MONO TRANSLATION BUREAU

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