Watch the video through to get an overall view of everything Joyce, Thomas, Vicky and Louise talk about.
Watch the video again. This time pay attention to the following characteristics of spoken English that we can identify in this three-minute video.
- Fillers to gain thinking time: er; erm; you know; like; well
- Use of really to express emphasis
- Showing agreement: yeah; yeah, exactly; Um-hm; I know; Absolutely
- Use of actually to introduce a bit of surprising information
- Showing surprise: Whoa! It's incredible; Oh my God!
- Use of I mean to make yourself clear
- Use of like as a linking word
- Use of so as a linking word
Now it's over to you. Preferably, get together with a friend and relative and discuss these questions together: What do you think about the topic of book censorship?
Have any books ever been censored in your country?
What was their 'threat'?
Try and use any of the features of spoken English we have mentioned in this post.
Joyce: I read an article the other day about, er, censorship, and especially with kid’s books. And I was really surprised; there was this book called, er, Daddy’s Roommate, that Sarah Palin was trying really hard when she was the mayor of, er, Wasilla, er, Alaska, this little town in Alaska. She was trying to ban it. And it’s a story about this little boy [whose] parents are divorced, he goes [and] visits his dad, and of course Daddy’s roommate is his male partner.
Joyce: Right. But then a lot of, like, these child psychologists were saying, but these books are important because a lot of kids who are in these situations and, you know, it’s important to have books like that also.
Thomas: It’s a great platform to run your political campaign on, banning books and telling people what they can and can’t read.
Joyce: Well, yeah, we all…
Louise: And parents what they can and can’t give to their children to read.
Thomas: Yeah, exactly.
Louise: Yeah. It’s a shock, yeah.
Vicky: Because then doesn’t that go completely and utterly against the American constitution?
Joyce: Well, this is…
Vicky: Freedom of choice? Ha ha ha.
Thomas: Well… let’s not get into that.
Vicky: Of speech? Ha ha ha.
Joyce: Yeah. There was another book also that was banned, it was called, er, or not banned, at least on this list of challenged books and it was called erm, er, With Tango, or And Tango or Three, or With Tango or Three, I don’t remember exact-, actually remember the title, but it was about, and it’s actually a true story. It’s about two male penguins in the, at the New York Zoo, that adopted a little baby penguin.
Joyce: And even that. Like, you know, you think the other one, OK, because of, well, the homosexuality aspect but I mean, like, these are penguins, you know…
Joyce: And even that book was considered challenge in some parts.
Vicky: It’s incredible.
Louise: It is. I think, I think parents should be able to choose what they, what they give to their children to read. Interference by the state, for me, is really strange.
Vicky: Oh, I don’t know, I mean…as children get older, they should be able to choose their own books to read as well.
Thomas: Of course.
Vicky: You know? And I remember, one of my teachers, fair enough I was young. When I was in primary six, I was about ten years old, I was reading It, by Stephen King.
Vicky: And my parents knew it, they didn’t mind. They were like, “OK, here fine, read it.” Ha ha. “You’ll probably get to chapter two.” Ha ha. And I did, I got to chapter two, and then my primary school teacher confiscated it.
Thomas: Oh my God!
Vicky: I know. My primary [school teacher] was completely horrified that I was…
Thomas: But didn’t that make you want to read it more?
Vicky: Yeah, well… but they’d already made the movie so at that point I just went. Ha ha ha.
Thomas: Well because before film…
Vicky: She wouldn’t give me it back, so…
Thomas: In theory I’m against, er, censorship… hardcore, but in practice it only galvanizes the reading public to go after that book more.
Thomas: [It] makes the author more popular, and makes the book almost cult status.
Thomas: It’s like, er, no publicity is bad publicity.
Joyce: Yeah there’s this fellow called Pullman. I don’t actually know him, he writes children’s books. And he’s supposedly… so, well some people in Wisconsin or something think he’s anti-Christian so they banned his books. They’re also kid’s books. He wrote this trilogy. And he was saying, “Oh well it’s great for sales, like a lot…
Thomas: I’m sure now people are like, “Well what’s so, what can’t I do? Let me check it out.”