Saturday, August 2, 2014   

Singapore writers angered over destruction of LGBT-themed children's books
(07-11 18:24)

Leading Singaporean writers on Friday expressed outrage over the national library's plans to destroy three children's books seen to promote homosexuality.
The National Library Board (NLB) late Thursday confirmed it would "pulp'' three children's titles deemed to be against its "pro-family'' stance following complaints by a parent and its own internal review.
Singapore's small but vocal arts and literary community slammed the move as an exercise in "book burning'' and censorship, amid rising tensions between religious conservatives and gay-rights activists in the city-state.
The three books to be destroyed include "And Tango Makes Three'' -- a true story about two male penguins in a New York zoo which raised a baby penguin -- and "The White Swan Express'', which features children adopted by straight, gay, mixed-race and single parents.
The third book, "Who's In My Family'', discusses different types of families, including references to gay couples.
The state-funded NLB is a network of 26 public libraries with a collection of five million books and multimedia items.
Prominent local writer Ng Yi-Sheng bemoaned the NLB's decision to destroy the books instead of choosing a "compromise solution, such as putting the books in adult lending or even the reference section''.
"I want you to bring up these book burnings in your public events,'' he told fellow authors in a Facebook post.
Alfian Sa'at, a playwright, called for a boycott of the NLB network.
"Our stand is precise and clear: We are against censorship, an opaque bureaucracy and the destruction of books,'' he said. --AFP   
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