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Is it wrong to read Stephen King now?

(154 Posts)
cantdothisnow1 Sun 11-Oct-20 14:41:57

I agree with JKR not SK on the issue of whether it is possible to change sex. I am horrified at the abuse that JKR has received and believe that trans rights should never be at the expense of women and girls.

I recently read a Stephen King book and enjoyed it and posted about enjoying it on a book thread on here. Someone suggested I shouldn't be reading Stephen King because of his views.

Surely this is just as bad as people trying to erase JKR for her views and does women's rights no good? Am i missing something, am I wrong for enjoying these books?

OP’s posts: |
MasterOfCaffeine Sun 11-Oct-20 14:44:09

I was always a huge SK fan and am in the middle of one of his books at the moment but this has put me right off him and I probably won't read another one again, which I think is sad.

MasterOfCaffeine Sun 11-Oct-20 14:45:15

Guess that doesn't answer your question though. If you're still happy to read then go ahead. It's not something I can get past though, which is annoying cos he is a great writer.

Butterer Sun 11-Oct-20 14:45:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cantdothisnow1 Sun 11-Oct-20 14:48:38

Butterer

It depends on whether you want to separate art from the artist.

Yes it does but on the one had we can't criticise TRA's for trying to cancel JKR and then reject the work of another author for opposing views.

OP’s posts: |
TheChampagneGalop Sun 11-Oct-20 14:50:32

You can read whatever you want. I lost interest in King's work after learning that IT features a lenghty child orgy scene though. www.express.co.uk/entertainment/films/853792/IT-movie-Stephen-King-ORGY-Pennywise-Losers-Club-Beverly-child-underage-sex-scene

ISaySteadyOn Sun 11-Oct-20 14:51:28

I don't think you have to. But there is a big difference between deciding not to read an author because you disagree with their views and calling for an author to DIAF and pretending they didn't write their own books.

Saucery Sun 11-Oct-20 14:57:08

His recent stuff isn’t really worth reading tbh.
He’s never been able to write female characters worth shit anyway, so any proclamation about what constitutes being a woman he cares to make wasn’t going to hold much weight.
I’m guessing close relationship with a trans woman or transman might have coloured his view, but that isn’t my problem as a reader.

Nothing will take the shine off Christine, You Know They’ve Got One Hell Of A Band or Rage for me, so yeah, Art from Artist here.

EyesOpening Sun 11-Oct-20 14:57:51

No-one else can tell you what you can and can't read, it's entirely up to you! If you don't however, want to line his pockets, you could always try searching charity shops for his books and they'd benefit instead or the library, where he'd get a much smaller amount

MarDhea Sun 11-Oct-20 14:57:52

It's not a dichotomy for me.

I think less of Stephen King, Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman as people for signing a public letter that does little more than chant slogans. I still enjoy their works. It's been the case for years that I love Margaret Atwood's books, but cringe whenever I hear or read her in interview because her views seem so absolutist and poorly thought out - not at all what I would have suspected from her books.

But there are other writers whom I have grown to despise for their TRA-esque views, where they gleefully join in with terf-bashing on Twitter and in interviews. NK Jemisin is one, Cory Doctorow another. I can't enjoy their works any more both because I'm reminded of the above and because their TWAW, virtue-cookie-hunting views have leached into their books.

So enjoy SK all you want if he hasn't crossed a line of revulsion for you. You'll know what that line is if you hit it!

EBearhug Sun 11-Oct-20 14:59:22

I think it makes more sense to read someone's work and make up your own mind, than just take the word if the Internet. (Though in this case, I guess you can limit it to the letter in question.) In the cases of JKR and SK, I don't think either is likely to end up on the breadline if some people decide not to read their books.

I don't usually find out about an author's political views when I read a fiction book. I probably would for a book about politics, maybe history, because it's more relevant. Sometimes I have read books because of who wrote them and I know about their viewpoint.

I think the reason I wouldn't declare I will never read a book by X again is because it's difficult to judge something you haven't read.

Hailtomyteeth Sun 11-Oct-20 15:02:34

Read what you like.

All this 'you can't read/listen/look because 'they' have the wrong thoughts' is absolute nonsense. Totalitarian nonsense. Orwellian nonsense. It needs to be shoved up the arses of the people who are insisting upon it. The sneering twitterati and such. The Thought Police.
I haven't read Stephen King for years. I don't want to. But if you do want to, do it.

I don't think it's a good idea to have extra-marital affairs. Shall I refuse to read anything by authors who've had a bit on the side? How shall I police that? And music? Most of my favourite musicians play away... they're on the road (pre-pandemic) and have endless opportunities. I don't stop listening.

If you were religious, we could talk about how God uses imperfect people to bring about great good.

The art is separate from the artist.

cantdothisnow1 Sun 11-Oct-20 15:10:51

Hailtomyteeth

Read what you like.

All this 'you can't read/listen/look because 'they' have the wrong thoughts' is absolute nonsense. Totalitarian nonsense. Orwellian nonsense. It needs to be shoved up the arses of the people who are insisting upon it. The sneering twitterati and such. The Thought Police.
I haven't read Stephen King for years. I don't want to. But if you do want to, do it.

I don't think it's a good idea to have extra-marital affairs. Shall I refuse to read anything by authors who've had a bit on the side? How shall I police that? And music? Most of my favourite musicians play away... they're on the road (pre-pandemic) and have endless opportunities. I don't stop listening.

If you were religious, we could talk about how God uses imperfect people to bring about great good.

The art is separate from the artist.

Yes that's how I feel about it. Someone popped up on my thread about the book to tell me that 'they wouldn't touch him with a barge poll because of his bashing of JKR and his misogynistic views'.

To me that's as bad as TRAs telling people not to read JKR for opposing views. Obviously it is not as bad as some of the burn the witch / and horrible things that have been said about her on twitter.

OP’s posts: |
nauticant Sun 11-Oct-20 15:20:24

There's a large gap between choosing not to read an author's book and campaigning for others not to read it, especially when the campaigning is based on lies, manipulation of others, and death threats.

I've only read one Stephen King book, Under the Dome, and the unpleasant nature of that book was enough for me. I felt the audience for that book would be those who would derive some pleasure from the nasty violence it described, particularly sexual violence. And the less said about the ending the better.

teawamutu Sun 11-Oct-20 15:20:44

MarDhea

It's not a dichotomy for me.

I think less of Stephen King, Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman as people for signing a public letter that does little more than chant slogans. I still enjoy their works. It's been the case for years that I love Margaret Atwood's books, but cringe whenever I hear or read her in interview because her views seem so absolutist and poorly thought out - not at all what I would have suspected from her books.

But there are other writers whom I have grown to despise for their TRA-esque views, where they gleefully join in with terf-bashing on Twitter and in interviews. NK Jemisin is one, Cory Doctorow another. I can't enjoy their works any more both because I'm reminded of the above and because their TWAW, virtue-cookie-hunting views have leached into their books.

So enjoy SK all you want if he hasn't crossed a line of revulsion for you. You'll know what that line is if you hit it!

Exactly this. I'd add Joanne Harris too - not going to boycott her, but can't imagine right now wanting to read any of them again.

FairFriday Sun 11-Oct-20 15:21:26

I always thought he wrote mostly cheesy crap, so was never a reader. Certainly wouldn’t now. These days I tend to be ‘pulled’ towards authorised rather than a ‘pushed’ away.

SunsetBeetch Sun 11-Oct-20 15:24:01

MarDhea

It's not a dichotomy for me.

I think less of Stephen King, Margaret Atwood, Neil Gaiman as people for signing a public letter that does little more than chant slogans. I still enjoy their works. It's been the case for years that I love Margaret Atwood's books, but cringe whenever I hear or read her in interview because her views seem so absolutist and poorly thought out - not at all what I would have suspected from her books.

But there are other writers whom I have grown to despise for their TRA-esque views, where they gleefully join in with terf-bashing on Twitter and in interviews. NK Jemisin is one, Cory Doctorow another. I can't enjoy their works any more both because I'm reminded of the above and because their TWAW, virtue-cookie-hunting views have leached into their books.

So enjoy SK all you want if he hasn't crossed a line of revulsion for you. You'll know what that line is if you hit it!

That's my thinking too.

Spiderbaby8 Sun 11-Oct-20 15:24:25

I will still read SK, but I think it's different to choose not to read someone and the huge backlash JKR got. I think it's fine if people don't want to read JKR anymore, but it has gone beyond that.

I think it's like people choosing not to use a business anymore like the body shop. I am not going to support any huge campaign against them, insults against anyone working there or sending threats, but withdrawing custom and support is legitimate.

IAmNotAGirl Sun 11-Oct-20 15:25:45

Agreed, an authors stated views might put me off reading them but I won't call for a boycott of authors. I would prefer to buy the books second hand if I could.

cantdothisnow1 Sun 11-Oct-20 15:29:06

Spiderbaby8

I will still read SK, but I think it's different to choose not to read someone and the huge backlash JKR got. I think it's fine if people don't want to read JKR anymore, but it has gone beyond that.

I think it's like people choosing not to use a business anymore like the body shop. I am not going to support any huge campaign against them, insults against anyone working there or sending threats, but withdrawing custom and support is legitimate.

Yes I agree with the first point.

I suppose I was shocked that when talking about my feelings about a particular book by Stephen King which really moved me due to some of it's themes about passage of time and romance, some people saw fit to come on to tell me they couldn't read any of his work due to his political views. This had nothing to do with my thread which was about the content of the book. I wasn't courting that opinion.

OP’s posts: |
Kit19 Sun 11-Oct-20 15:38:03

nauticant

There's a large gap between choosing not to read an author's book and campaigning for others not to read it, especially when the campaigning is based on lies, manipulation of others, and death threats.

I've only read one Stephen King book, Under the Dome, and the unpleasant nature of that book was enough for me. I felt the audience for that book would be those who would derive some pleasure from the nasty violence it described, particularly sexual violence. And the less said about the ending the better.

This 👆🏻

I’ll not be reading Joanne Harris again because of her breathtaking hypocrisy & whining but I’d never campaign for other ppl not to read her books

Spiderbaby8 Sun 11-Oct-20 15:40:48

I suppose I was shocked that when talking about my feelings about a particular book by Stephen King which really moved me due to some of it's themes about passage of time and romance, some people saw fit to come on to tell me they couldn't read any of his work due to his political views. This had nothing to do with my thread which was about the content of the book. I wasn't courting that opinion

Yes I can see how coming into a thread about a particular book is annoying. I don't think it's the same as what happened to JKR, but I wouldn't do it myself. I think I will always be a King fan. On the whole I try and separate the art and artist, although sometimes it's difficult.

Oxyiz Sun 11-Oct-20 15:40:49

Nah. That's purity spiral stuff. I'd like to think we're the grownups in this whole debate who can like one thing about someone/something without them needing to be perfect. Unlike the other side which demands an absolute puritan attitude.

TweeBree Sun 11-Oct-20 15:44:01

It's entirely up to you. I've stopped reading a writer who signed one of the inane letters but I wouldn't demand she lose her job over it.

InflamatoryWrit Sun 11-Oct-20 15:45:08

Nah. That's purity spiral stuff. I'd like to think we're the grownups in this whole debate who can like one thing about someone/something without them needing to be perfect.

Exactly. If you like his books, read them. Anything else is playground antics.

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