After racist and insensitive images were detected in six Dr. Seuss books, they will no longer be published, the business that preserves and protects the author’s legacy confirmed on Tuesday (March 2).
The books that will no longer be published are “If I Ran the Zoo,” “And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street,” “McElligot’s Pool,” “On Beyond Zebra!,” “Scrambled Eggs Super!,” and “The Cat’s Quizzer,” the Associated Press reports.
“These books portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong,” Dr. Seuss Enterprises told AP in a statement. “Ceasing sales of these books is only part of our commitment and our broader plan to ensure Dr. Seuss Enterprises’ catalog represents and supports all communities and families.”
In "And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street," an Asian character in the book is wearing a conical hat, holding chopsticks, and eating from a bowl, reports CNN. And in "If I Ran the Zoo," a drawing of two bare-footed African or Black men appear to be wearing grass skirts with their hair tied above their heads.
“The Cat’s Quizzer” shows a Japanese character who has a bright yellow face being referred to as ‘a Japanese,’ and appears to be standing on what looks to be Mt. Fuji.
Dr. Seuss, born Theodor Seuss Geisel, is best-known for his classic books “The Cat in the Hat,” “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” and “Green Eggs and Ham,” has sold over 650 million copies of his books worldwide, the Washington Post noted in 2015.
The author has reportedly had a long history of publishing both anti-semitic and racist imagery in his work. According to a study published in the journal “Research on Diversity in Youth Literature,” Dr. Seuss had once drawn Black boxers as gorillas and used a Jewish stereotype in another body of work by portraying Jewish characters as financially conscious and cheap.
Fifty books by Dr. Seuss showed that 43 out the 45 characters of colors have “characteristics aligning with the definition of Orientalism,” the study shows.
(AP Photo/Steven Senne)