“Mark Twain’s Earliest Reading Experiences”

“Alan Gribben participated in a Quarry Farm Symposium: “Mark Twain and Youth” with a paper and PowerPoint presentation about “Mark Twain’s Earliest Literary Experiences.” What Samuel Clemens read as a boy in Hannibal is a tantalizing but essentially unanswerable question. Only a few hints in his later writings suggest the types of books to which…

The Big Read in 2010 (Video)

The idea of removing the n-word from Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn–by translating this detested racial slur as “slave” instead–occurred to me after I completed a tour of libraries in Alabama and Georgia to promote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer for the NEA Big Read program. Teachers approached me in every town and said that they could not (or would not) teach…