One of most distinguished comic names out there, Ricky Gervais bemoaned how “fragile” people have become. The 61-year-old British comedian added his two cents to the debate surrounding changes made to Roald Dahl’s books.
Publishing house Puffin recently announced the edits made to many of author Roald Dahl’s famous children’s classics in order to remove words such as ‘fat’ and ‘ugly’. The issue sparked intense debate online.
Ricky wrote on Twitter: “This is me pondering whether they’ll change any of the words I’ve used in my work after I’m dead, to spare those who are fragile and easily offended.
“Words like ‘fat’ and ‘ugly’. And ‘****’ and ‘f***’. And ‘fat, ugly, greedy, pathetic little stupid f****** ****’. Stuff like that. (sic)”
When one of the Ricky’s followers pointed out that he wouldn’t have to make any changes, as his work isn’t aimed at children.
The Office star replied: “Yeah I know. It was a joke.”
Ricky later added: “I’ve changed my mind. I think we should ban the words ‘fat’ and ‘ugly’. No reason.”
Meanwhile, the publishing company Puffin recently announced plans to release two versions of each Roald Dahl book – the original and the edited ones.
Francesca Dow, the managing director of Penguin Random House Children’s, said in a statement: “We’ve listened to the debate over the past week which has reaffirmed the extraordinary power of Roald Dahl’s books and the very real questions around how stories from another era can be kept relevant for each new generation.
“As a children’s publisher, our role is to share the magic of stories with children with the greatest thought and care. Roald Dahl’s fantastic books are often the first stories young children will read independently, and taking care for the imaginations and fast-developing minds of young readers is both a privilege and a responsibility.
“We also recognise the importance of keeping Dahl’s classic texts in print. By making both Puffin and Penguin versions available, we are offering readers the choice to decide how they experience Roald Dahl’s magical, marvellous stories.”