The Daily

On the Shelf

Jane Austen Unmentionables, and Other News

August 5, 2013 | by


  • Sherman Alexie’s National Book Award–winning The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian has been pulled from the PS 114 sixth-grade reading list based on the following: “And if God hadn’t wanted us to masturbate, then God wouldn’t have given us thumbs. So I thank God for my thumbs.”
  • Speaking of the National Book Awards: the gotcha! stunt is as old as time. In the 1970s, a disgruntled writer submitted the manuscript of Jerzy Kosiński’s award-winning Steps (sans famous author name) to publishers and, yep, it was rejected.
  • Did Shakespeare really invent the concept of zero?
  • “Nestling in the middle of my Jane Austen goody bag is a black lace thong.” A visit to the JASNA convention, the Comic Con of Janeites. 
  • And a list of well-read TV characters begins with the dog Wishbone, from Wishbone. Happy Monday!



    1. Shelley | August 5, 2013 at 2:38 pm

      Knowing Sherman Alexie, I’m willing to bet money that whatever his retort is to the thumb-censoring is going to be even funnier than the original thumb-comment.

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