Bookbabble Episode 34: Hard Times for Literature in Schools

May 22, 2009 by

Bookbabble Episode 34: Hard Times for Literature in Schools
Recorded 17 May 2009
Bjorn, Gem, Renee, Donny with guest Emma Sutcliffe


The babblers are joined by a guest today, the affable Emma Sutcliffe from Blackburn, England, as they talk about literature that is part of the school syllabus.ย  What’s being taught in schools in the babblers’ countries, whether it needs to be changed and why.ย  Plus, Emma spills on the book that scarred her during her schooling years.

Show Length: 86:24 mins



Download the show here.


  1. Thanks guys. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. A quick FYI:

    There’s a “guest” feature at Diverse Discussion: The Hell Hole.

    If you are a bit shy, or one of those that likes to toe the water before you dive in, there’s a section for guest posting.

    Feel free to start a discussion, or comment on something as a guest before take the leap into the deep end.

    The “Guest” section is the sub-forum at the very bottom of the page.

    Of course, we also just love it when people just throw caution to the wind and do a back-flip with a twist into the deep end.

    Thanks again.

  3. steffee

    Stopping by to leave a comment.

    Wow, I had no idea I’d missed so many of your episodes…

    I would just like to say thank you, to all of you, for RUINING all my happy memories of my favourite books from my youth. Donny – ‘The Diary of a Young Girl’ is one of my most treasured reads. I read it when I was very young (and the idea of being locked up with in an attic was just terrible) and romantic (aww, Peter…) and, actually, I liked ‘Flowers in the Attic’ too, so should maybe just stop right there…

    I too read ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ at school. I liked it, though I didn’t know anything about American history then (and I still don’t), and ‘Lord of the Flies’. A different class to me read ‘Of Mice and Men’ and I read that and liked that too. This makes it sound as though I liked everything I read… In Year 8 (age 12-13) we read Sherlock Holmes and I absolutely detested that.

    I hated ‘Hard Times’ as well. In fact, I hated Dickens for a good few years – he was just so dreary and boring. Then a few years ago, I tried him again and thought he was great. He really knows his characters!

    I had some interesting English teachers at school. They wore the coolest clothes and shouted a lot. I’m not going to defend them, though. My mother is an English Lit. teacher – they are quite strange.

    Your podcasts are brilliant – educational and entertaining. You sound like you’re having so much fun. Thank you all again.

    I think the kids at school should read Bill Bryson. Or, I’d second the Stephen King vote, even though I was 25 or so when I read my first of his. Laughs or frights, though.

  4. Donny

    Haha Stef, good to see you! That’s our job, ruining cosy memories of good (or in this case, terrible) books. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thank you for the kind words, although I’m unsure about using Stephen King (adult content) or Bill Bryson (too funny) would be appropriate as texts for kids at school.

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