A graphic novel for children from the wild Captain Underpants The series is being pulled off the shelves of libraries and bookstores after the editor declares that it “perpetuates passive racism”.
The book examined dates from 2010 The adventures of Ook and Gluk by Dav Pilkey, who apologized and said that it “contains harmful racial stereotypes” and is “wrong and harmful to my Asian readers”.
The book follows a pair of friends who, from 500,001 B.C. Chr. Travel. until 2222 where they meet a martial arts teacher who teaches them kung fu and learns the principles of Chinese philosophy.
Scholastic said it removed the book from its websites, stopped processing orders, and requested a return of all inventory. “We will take steps to inform schools and libraries that may still have this title in circulation of our decision to withdraw it from publication,” the publisher said in a statement.
In a YouTube statement, Pilkey said he plans to donate his advance payment and any royalties from the book’s sale to groups working to stop violence against Asians and promote diversity in children’s books and publications.
“I hope that you, my readers, will forgive me and learn from my mistake that even unintentional and passive stereotypes and racism are harmful to all,” he wrote. “I apologize and promise to do better.”
The decision comes amid a wave of high-profile and sometimes fatal violence against Asian Americans since the pandemic began.
Earlier this month, Dr. Seuss informed that six of his books would no longer be published because they contained accounts of groups that were “hurtful and wrong”, including Asian Americans. The move sparked an immediate reaction on social media from those who referred to it as yet another example of “culture breakup”.
News Gob reached out to Scholastic Canada to confirm the book is being taken off the shelves here, too.