Date of Award


Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

First Advisor

George Evans


This research project concludes that it is legal, ethical, and pedagogically sound to teach The Catcher in the Rye and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in the public secondary schools. These books are popular, stimulating, and provide opportunity to study American literature at its best and to discuss important issues of our time.

Teachers should be prepared to answer complaints concerning the books they teach.

Through an interdisciplinary approach, this project found that the teaching of the novels was behavior protected by the First Amendment; that the benefits of teaching them outweighed potential harm and so is ethically proper; and that there were pedagogical techniques available to help the practicing teacher teach controversial novels.