Rupi Kaur, a Canadian-Sikh poet, has made it to the list of 11 most banned books in US classrooms for the first half of the 2022-23 school year. Kaur’s debut work, ‘Milk and Honey’, which was released in 2014, has been banned due to its exploration of issues related to sexual assault and violence, according to non-profit organisation PEN America, which provided the data. Last month, Kaur’s Twitter account was also withheld in India due to the Khalistan issue.
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According to the report, ‘Milk and Honey’ and Toni Morrison’s ‘The Bluest Eye’ tied in ninth place on the list of most banned books in US classrooms for the first half of the 2022-23 school year. Both books were banned in 10 districts in Missouri alone. Rupi Kaur, who was born in Punjab, expressed her concern about the situation in an Instagram post last week, saying that she is troubled by the fact that there are people trying to take away literature that students find comfort in.
The banned books list
The banned books list mainly focused on topics such as race and racism, LGBTQ+ characters, grief or death, student health and well-being, and teen pregnancy, abortion or sexual assault. Apart from ‘Milk and Honey’, Rupi Kaur has written several other titles, including ‘The Sun and Her Flowers’ and ‘Home Body’. Kaur’s collections have sold more than 11 million copies and have been translated into over 43 languages. ‘Milk and Honey’ has even surpassed Homer’s Odyssey as the best-selling poetry of all time, according to Kaur’s website. She has been recognized as the “writer of the decade” by the New Republic and has been listed on the Forbes 30 under 30 list. However, there have been allegations of plagiarism against Kaur, claiming that she stole her poetry style and content from Nayyirah Waheed and Pavana Reddy.
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