GLEN ROSE, Ark. -- The novel 'Flowers for Algernon' has been banned by school officials who say the book contains explicit sex scenes and offensive words.
'The book described the sex act in explicit four-letter terms.
It was sort of like the books in plastic covers you see at some newsstands,' school superintendent Don Henson said Friday.
Objections to the book were first raised by the father of an eighth grade student, and the book was reviewed by a committee before it was removed from the high school library, Henson said.
'Flowers for Algernon' by Daniel Keyes is the story of a retarded man who undergoes surgery and temporarily becomes a genius. The book was made into the movie 'Charly,' and Cliff Robertson won an Academy Award for the role in 1968.
Henson said 'Flowers for Algernon' is the only book that has been banned at the library, but he said teachers have blacked out some four-letter words in other books.
'I'm appalled by this action,' said Marc Arnold, chairman of the English Department at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
'I don't know where it is all going to stop,' he said. 'I read that book years and years ago. It is a wonderful novel for adolescents because it gives them a marvelous opportunity to explore how the brain and thought processes work. I think it helps them see what is going on inside of other people and helps raise their sensitivity.'