Final Essay

Per. 4 & 5 American Studies

Saturday, June 10, 2000

To The Other Team Members,

We have all been called here today to make a decision on whether or not we want to include the book, Montana 1948, in the curriculum. We all have our personal beliefs about whether or not we want to include this book, and after spending lots of time thinking about this, I have decided that we should not include this book. This was a very hard decision for me. The reasons I chose not to include this book were based on the books content, style, and its connections to social and political events of the time.

The major issue I had with this book was the content. I think that this book was a little too much for high school kids. There were too many sexual remarks in this book for fifteen and sixteen year old children. The book was based on a doctor that raped Indian women. I think that this is a thing that happened during that time, but it is not enough to base a book on. I’m sure it happens just as much today, but not on the same level as it happened in the book. When you think back to the 1940’s, you don’t think of doctors raping women. There are many other things to write a book about during the 1940’s and 1950’s, including the development of the Atomic Bomb, which would benefit the children in the class much more.

The style of this book also contributes to why I decided not to include it. The book has to be a book that the kids will want to read and will keep them interested. This book did not do that for me. It was plain and did not have much action in it until the end. That was the main part that made it hard for me to recommend this book. The ending of the book was very powerful and action packed. When the hired farm hands on David’s grandfather’s farm went to David’s house and tried to free his Uncle. Although at the end you wanted to keep reading to find out what was going to happen, the rest of the book was not exactly like this. It was more straightforward and boring during the first three quarters of the book, which I’m sure kept some kids from reading the entire book. The whole point of teaching is to have kids learn, not let them fail reading tests because it was a totally boring book that no one wanted to read.

The clincher that made me decide that this book should not be included was the connections to social and political events during this time. It showed well what the jobs were around that time and some of the problems of small country living. But like I said before, the basis of the book did not relate to the time period very well. It was an off center topic that contributed to me voting against this book.

In conclusion, I disagree with having this book in the class. It is just too much in content for a child to read. It gives children the wrong idea about what went on during the 1940’s. It has very little connections to the social life during the time and is in general not a very good book. Because of these reasons, I choose to vote no to having this book in the curriculum.