Should Catcher in the Rye Sequel Be Banned?

by Derwood Hunsdale-Talbot on January 13, 2011

Cast Your Vote

The so-called sequel to Catcher in the Rye has been banned for publication in the US and Canada for the near future, announces its author, Swedish writer Fredrick Colting.

The primary injunction indefinitely banning the books publication was issued by Judge Deborah Batts in July 2010; it wasn’t until this week that Colting reached a settlement with the Salinger estate over copyright issues. As it stands now, Colting cannot reference Salinger, Holden Caulfield, or Catcher in the Rye ever, and he cannot publish in Canada or the US until Salinger’s copyright has expired.

Catcher in the rye by salinger

Image courtesy oso via Flickr

The argument: Those against Colting and his novel (titled 60 Years Later: Coming Through the Rye) claim it is dismally written and a cheap rip-off of the original work. Although a fictional character can not legally be copyrighted, Judge Batts claims the Salinger’s famous Holden Caulfield is a “portrait by words” and therefore should be given the same rights as a portrait or illustration.

The defense: Colting and his lawyers stand by their appeal that 60YL is not a copy, but a commentary, of Salinger’s seminal work. “This is a highly transformative work about the relationship between Salinger and his character,” says Edward Rosenthal, Colting’s lawyer.

My question to you: Should the fake Salinger sequel/rip-off/commentary be banned? Is it that big of a deal? Could this book possibly cause the “irreparable harm” to Salinger that the pro-banners claim?

Read more about the great Salinger debate courtesy BBC

Sequel to Catcher in the Rye ‘banned in US’

Sequel ‘may not harm Salinger’

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Should Catcher in the Rye Sequel Be Banned? | Electronic Book Reviews
February 3, 2011 at 9:31 pm

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Amanda January 13, 2011 at 3:50 pm

Interesting. I would have to read it and then decide. Typically, I’m strongly opposed to book banning or effing with books long after publication (ie the whole Huck Finn controversy). Leave those books alone!

I do think that it’s a poor choice to write a “sequel,” especially one titled “Coming through the Rye.” Yikes. I’m surprised it even made it to publication. I voted for the ban because it sounds like it’s just a straight rip.

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