Mastodon Wednesday morning —

Wednesday morning

Listening to a Shedunnit episode about removing offensive old language from Golden Age mystery novels, and realized I never got around to making a clean version of Kipling’s wonderful “How the Leopard Got His Spots”, the only story in the whole Just So Stories book with a very unfortunate word in it. I recorded the book years ago for librivox, where we have a hard-and-fast policy of reading the text as written. So today I snipped out the offensive word, saved the whole book in a zip and uploaded it all to my own archive.

In the story, in order to improve their camouflage, the Leopard gets his sandy-brown skin painted with spots and the Ethiopian gets his sandy-brown skin painted a beautiful black. The Ethiopian compliments the Leopard’s new spots, and the Leopard asks, well, if spots are so great why didn’t you choose them too? And the Ethiopian says, “Oh, plain black’s best for a n*****. ”

Well, now it reads like my childhood edition: “Oh, plain black’s best!”

Body-positive instead of offensive!

Here is the whole book, all 12 stories, in a zip file.

You’ll see that chapter 4 is marked CLEAN, so you’ll know you’ve got the right version. You can also visit my archive page to stream the stories one at a time.
Again, you’ll see that chapter 4 includes the word CLEAN in the title.

On this page you can find links to all the chapters plus a podcast feed:

I hope you will share these wonderful stories with your kids!

Category: Audiobooks, Blog One comment »

One Response to “Wednesday morning”

  1. Soozan

    You’re wonderful – thank you ??

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