Fandango’s Provocative Question #204

Fandango has chosen a very provocative question this week. At least it is for me because I feel strongly about it. If you haven’t already it might be a good idea to nip over to read Fandango’s introduction where he describes a project to rewrite several Roald Dahl books to make them less offensive.

I haven’t read the books myself. I have heard of them of course. I disagree strongly with the idea of editing the books in this way. Surely by changing the language you would take the edge out of the stories and isn’t that what made them popular with children?

I really dislike it when this sort of thing happens. It does feel like censorship to me. I don’t think it is right to change someone’s words without their permission. Of course, I understand that a lot of books and films that were created a long time ago may be shocking to some people, but I don’t think that it is either right or necessary to sanitise everything. It reminds me of “1984” by George Orwell, where, Winston Smith, the protagonist, worked for the Ministry of Truth, where he revised history and changed news articles to match the government’s version of the truth.

Photo by Markus Spiske on

We should not pretend that things that we don’t like didn’t happen and that’s what this kind of editing does. People should be free to read what they want to read in its original form. If something offends you, then just don’t read it.

I do have a conscience and I think about things that happened in the past that I know to be wrong. I have been told that I am “woke” which is a term I don’t really like. However, that doesn’t mean that I want to see books and movies from those times changed beyond recognition. I can still enjoy them as stories despite the content. Going back to Roald Dahl for a moment here are some of the changes that are being made to his stories.

Gone are references to people being “fat,” “ugly,” “bald,” and “crazy.” Scary tractors are no longer “black.” Boys and girls are referred to as the more gender-neutral “children.”

Seriously, these are not terrible words. I didn’t even know that it was offensive to call someone bald. What are you allowed to call a person with no hair these days? Some people actually choose to be bald. As for the black tractors, isn’t that just the colour they are? How is there anything racist about that? I honestly don’t get it.

This has been a hard post for me to write. I know how I feel but I struggled to put it in to words. Perhaps it still doesn’t make a lot of sense. All I know is that to me this feels like political correctness gone mad.



I was born in England in 1957 and lived there until our family came to Australia in 1966. I grew up in Adelaide, South Australia, where I met and married my husband, David. We came together over a mutual love of trains. Both of us worked for the railways for many years, his job was with Australian National Railways, while I spent 12 years working for the STA, later TransAdelaide the Adelaide city transit system. After leaving that job I worked in hospitality until 2008. We moved to Tasmania in 2002 to live in the beautiful Huon Valley. In 2015 David became ill and passed away in October of that year. I currently co-write two blogs on with my sister Naomi. Our doll blog "Dolls, Dolls, Dolls", and "Our Other Blog" which is about everything else but with a focus on photographs and places in Tasmania. In November 2019 I began a new life in the house that Naomi and I intend to make our retirement home at Sisters Beach in Tasmania's northwest. Currently we have five pets between us. Naomi's two dogs Toby and Teddy and cats, Tigerwoods and Panther and my cat Polly. My dog Cindy passed away aged 16 in April 2022.


  1. I agree. This whole political correctness thing is out of hand. I can understand going forward wanting to be at least somewhat sensitive to language and how people may be offended by certain words. But we can’t change the past and we shouldn’t be changing the words published by past authors just to accommodate overly sensitive people or to sanitize them.

    Liked by 1 person

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