A mother in Northville, Mich., has filed a formal complaint against her daughter’s school district, stating that some passages in the definitive edition of “The Diary of a Young Girl: Anne Frank” are too graphic for seventh graders.
As Detroit’s Fox 2 reports, parent Gail Horalek says the unedited version of the diary, published in 1996, is too graphic for her daughter’s seventh grade class at Meads Mill Middle School. In the book, Frank describes in some detail the discovery of her genitalia.
Horalek told the Northville Patch that the school should have asked for parents’ permission before assigning seventh graders a book that she describes as “pornographic.”
“The problem is the school is giving the seventh graders inappropriate material and not explaining it to the parents,” Horalek told the Patch.
Horalek said the school should have sent a letter home to parents, as it has with similarly sensitive material.
“If they watch any kind of movie with a swear word in it, I have to sign a permission slip," Horalek said.
Horalek also claimed that every parent she spoke to was unaware of the passages in the unedited version. Her daughter brought them to her attention when she told Horalek that reading the book made her uncomfortable.
Given that the book is a firsthand account of Frank’s experiences during the Holocaust as a young Jewish girl, Horalek originally thought her daughter’s discomfort was due to the book’s depressing nature. It wasn’t until her daughter pointed out the book’s allegedly graphic passages that Horalek became concerned.
Now Horalek says she wants the unedited version of the diary, which became part of the school’s curriculum last year, removed from classrooms.
The paragraph in question is reprinted at Fox News Detroit. This passage did not appear in any of the previously published editions, it was edited out by Otto Frank for a reason. The unedited diary should be studied by historians and academics, but school children can read the classic.