According to the Associated Press, six books by famed children’s author and illustrator Dr. Seuss will no longer be published going forward due to imagery that is considered “racist and insensitive” by today’s standards, according to a statement issued by the business that preserves and protects the author’s legacy.
Dr. Seuss Enterprises said that the move – announced today, on what would have been the late Seuss’ 117th birthday – was made to make sure that his overall catalog is more inclusive.
“These books portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong,” they said. “Ceasing sales of these books is only part of our commitment and our broader plan to ensure Dr. Seuss Enterprises’ catalog represents and supports all communities and families,” it said.
The books in question include “And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street,” “If I Ran the Zoo,” “McElligot’s Pool,” “On Beyond Zebra!,” “Scrambled Eggs Super!,” and “The Cat’s Quizzer.”
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The company noted that they made the decision to no longer publish the six books after months of dialogue, including listening to criticism over how Black, Asian and other characters are drawn by Dr. Seuss in some of his books.
“Dr. Seuss Enterprises listened and took feedback from our audiences including teachers, academics and specialists in the field as part of our review process,” the company said. “We then worked with a panel of experts, including educators, to review our catalog of titles.”
This may not be the end of it, however; the possibility of more Dr. Seuss books being sent to the chopping block remains, as Dr. Seuss Enterprises’ statement noted that they are “committed to listening and learning and will continue to review our entire portfolio.”
Born in 1904, Theodor Seuss “Ted” Geisel is known for his work writing and illustrating more than 60 books under the pen name “Dr. Seuss.” His work includes some of the most popular children’s books of all time – including “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” and “The Cat in the Hat” – selling over 600 million copies and being translated into more than 20 languages by the time of his death in 1991.