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Hoarding is not collection development

Strangers in a Strange Land

Strange Peoples and Stranger Customs
Baldwin
1967

Submitter: Really, I think the title and cover say it all. But, just in case readers weren’t immediately alerted to the inappropriateness of this book for a current audience, there are gems like, “Some people have more culture than others.” Also, “Over in Africa, we find much the same strange situation. In the east African grasslands Negro and Negroid people have been cattle breeders for centuries. Yet milking is the chief economic use of livestock.” *gasp* They use cattle for milk? Also, photos 3 and 4 [below] are there for the lovely sentence comparing Shilluk men to poodles.

This book is weeded, now, and headed to a fate that its author would surely find strange: reincarnation (perhaps as toilet paper?).

Holly: Let’s not teach our children that people and customs are “strange.” This has no place in most public libraries. Replace it with something current that celebrates diversity!

More Cultures and Customs:

Eski-mo-no-you-didn’t

How to Speak Australian

A Question for the Ages (“The English: Are They  Human?”)

12 Responses to Strangers in a Strange Land

  • Maybe I’m too young, but even as someone who’s never going vegetarian, I can’t see why “they don’t eat beef” would come off as strange.
    If you only use it for milk, you need less cows. That seems pretty simple to understand.

  • When we were putting our children’s books into catagories, a school librarian recommeded “Other Cultures” as a catagory. So for some, things don’t change much.

    • Doesn’t LOC have something like that for dealing with religions? I know it starts with Christianity in great detail and then sort of peters out down to an “everything else” category.

      • I don’t know about LOC, but Dewey has 200-219 for generic religious stuff, 220-229 for Bible, 230-289 for Christianity, and 290-299 for other religions.

  • How could a book with such racist overtones have been published as recently as 1967? Surely, the civil rights movement was underway by then, at least in the USA!

  • We once got an Interlibrary Loan request for a book at the public library where I work called One Hundred Amazing Facts About The Negro. I thought one of my co-workers was playing a joke. It will definitely need to be weeded once it arrives back.

  • You should keep the jacket and put it on a book about Americans.

  • “Some people have more culture than others.” The writer of this book springs to mind.

  • He has confused ‘culture’ and civilization with technological progress. Most governments today still make the same mistake.

  • I don’t see any nose ornaments on the Masai man’s picture. Boy, the author of this book would definitely be weirded out by goth styles today.

    • I would *love* to have a book of this title, about goths and punks and other esthetic subcultures.