June 4, 2002

Standardized and sanitized - The

Standardized and sanitized - The Elderly Man and the Sea? Test Sanitizes Literary Texts - NYT

Yes, it's true. The New York State High School Regent's Exams contain literary passages from speeches and well known works, except that they have been modified to remove references to race, religion, alcohol and nationality. Some of the examples are amazing.

Certain revisions bordered on the absurd. In a speech by Kofi Annan, the United Nations secretary general, in addition to deletions about the United States' unpaid debt to the United Nations, any mention of wine and drinking was removed. Instead of praising "fine California wine and seafood," he ends up praising "fine California seafood." In Carol Saline's "Mothers and Daughters" a daughter no longer says she "went out to a bar" with her mother; on the Regents, they simply "went out."
Posted by James at June 4, 2002 1:54 PM
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