Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

July 18, 2007

American Publisher Passes on German Kids’ Book and Its Cartoon Nudity

imageI've been meaning to post this for a couple of days now but for some reason keep forgetting, so this may be considered a "Missed It" at this point: Spiegel Online has a nice summary article about American publisher Boyds Mills Press taking a pass on popular German author Rotraut Susanne Berner's Wimmel series. (Actually you might prefer the Independent write-up that remembers to include the name of the book series.) The reason: a pair of cartoon breasts and a microscopic cartoon penis as art in a museum.

This is interesting in that you can sort of see the publisher's point in this case. A children's book with incidental nudity would almost certainly cause some consternation given the lack of cartoon nudity in the ten billion other kids' books out this year. At the same time, it's kind of shameful to admit that this kind of innocuous thing -- the series is published in 13 countries, where I'm going to assume no one is running through the streets eating the flesh from people's faces -- could actually lead to criminal proceedings here. It's like that kid who can't invite other kids home to play after school because of some hard-ass, live-in relative.
posted 3:14 am PST | Permalink

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