A group of students at the University of Utah have started an online petition to have the graphic novel Fun Home removed from the curriculum of an English class.
“The issue is exposing people to pornography,” says Thomas Alvord, with a group called “No More Pornography.”
Drawings depicting sex acts are included in the 230 page novel. A student in the class was offended and approached the group “No More Pornography,” which made headlines earlier this year when it staged a successful protest of music videos shown a gym in Provo. The group has started an online petition in protest of the book.
Alvord says, “It’s like they’re turning their back and pretending graphics, depiction of oral sex, are not an issue.”
Vincent Pecora, the chair of the English Department at the U says, “If we try to only choose only the novels that have a moral point of view that we agree with, we might not have a whole lot of literature to teach.”
Pecora is defending the book and the professor teaching the course. Among his reasons, the University’s accommodation policy, which allows a student to get an alternate assignment or leave the course without penalty. Four other classes fulfill the requirement.
“I think it’s really an obligation to teach this kind of literature. It’s new, it’s interesting, it’s inventive,” Pecora said.
The story has generated almost 200 heated comments as of 10:30 a.m. PT today.