Posts Tagged ‘Enid Blyton’


This news article caught my eye immediately. As a qualified library teacher (too), part of my job was to make sure only quality books were available for the¬†kiddies to read in the school’s library. In our schools in South Africa, we used to have catalogues which contained only approved books. Approved books were books approved by Library Subject Consultants/Advisors. There were catalogues sent to the school’s library every three months with the latest approved books. Every book in the catalogue had an approved catalogue-number. You couldn’t have books on your library’s shelves without the approved number written on the title page. Enid Blyton’s books were also banned from our schools as they were seen as books with not much literary value. – It seems to me this is at least one thing the red necks and the boers agreed on. [hehe] Here is the complete article with the link at the bottom.

Enid Blyton banned by BBC for decades: memos

Popular children’s author Enid Blyton was banned from the BBC for nearly 30 years because officials thought her work “lacked literary value”, letters from the broadcaster’s archives showed Monday.

BBC executives turned down the chance to broadcast the plays and books of the creator of Noddy, the Famous Five and the Secret Seven because they were “such small beer” and had been produced by a “second rater”.

In an internal memo dated 1938, Jean Sutcliffe, head of the BBC Schools department, dismissed the work of the woman who went on to become one of the best-selling authors of her era.

“My impression of her stories is that they might do for Children’s Hour but certainly not for Schools Dept. They haven’t much literary value,” she wrote.

“There is rather a lot of the Pinky-winky-Doodle-doodle Dum-dumm type of name (and lots of pixies) in the original tales,” she added, before conceding they were “competently written”.

Two years later, the daily radio programme “Children’s Hour” rejected Blyton’s play “The Monkey and the Barrel Organ” because producers found its dialogue “both stilted and long winded”.

One team member wrote: “It really is odd to think that this woman is a best-seller.”

The released letters show Blyton realised she had been blacklisted.

After being invited to speak on a children’s programme in May 1949, Blyton replied to the producer: “I and my stories are completely banned by the BBC as far as children are concerned — not one story has ever been broadcast, and, so it is said, not one ever will be.”

In 1954, Sutcliffe explained that Blyton should not appear on the popular “Woman’s Hour” programme because the BBC risked becoming “just another victim of the amazing advertising campaign which has raised this competent and tenacious second-rater to such astronomical heights of success.”

Blyton finally appeared on “Woman’s Hour” in 1963, almost three decades after she first pitched ideas to the BBC.

She died in 1968 at the age of 71, but her books remain best-sellers today.

News-link HERE


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