Bath image sees Mem Fox children’s book removed from Florida libraries
18 May 2023
Guess What?, a children’s book written in 1988 by Adelaide, South Australia, based Australian author Mem Fox, has reportedly been removed from school libraries in the US state of Florida. An image of a character — drawn by illustrator Vivienne Goodman — taking a bath, apparently contravenes anti-pornography laws in the state:
In one illustration, Daisy sits across a double bowl sink (that she is comically too big to fit in) wearing a scuba mask. The bowls are filled with water, and she sits sideways in one with her feet splashing in the other. She is nude, but not exposed. Limbs cover her breasts and genitalia. The room is busy and pleasantly chaotic: soap on the floor, a frog on a towel, fish pegged to the clothesline that hangs over the sink. It’s far from a sexual image.
That it’s taken thirty-five years for this… transgression to come to light is mind boggling. The offending illustration — safe for work by the way, at least in Australia — can be seen here.