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Tintin in the Congo: Egmont to cease publication of the book

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MT50446
Member
#11 · Posted: 13 Jun 2015 08:11
True we have no information as to why Congo has been withdrawn but it's pretty obvious to me.
I'm just glad I have the book in various formats to keep .
Re the app version I would not be surprised if in due time that went by the wayside.
On an aside I wonder if you can buy Tintin and the soviets in Russia !
Lochlomondwhisky
Member
#12 · Posted: 15 Jun 2015 02:28
Well, I had better order my black and white Tintin in the Congo fast... I can't believe jock123 says he won't miss it... It's one of Hergé's oldest works!
Of course the story is not as good as the others but it's still Tintin!
Anyway I know that I don't want it to go...
jock123
Moderator
#13 · Posted: 15 Jun 2015 08:17
MT50446:
it's pretty obvious to me.

By all means have your own theory, but the spirit of Tintinology is to discover the facts, and we have none; it might be nothing more than financial reality - if it isn't making Egmont money, or is costing more to produce than it returns, or their customers are complaining more than they are praising it - or simply that they contractually no longer have the rights to it which have led to this situation.
Opinion is everyone's right, but we have to be careful when expressing it in a public forum, to the (unknown) motives of others, that we don't misrepresent that other person or organization.

Lochlomondwhisky:
I had better order my black and white Tintin in the Congo fast...

Egmont don't publish the black-and-white edition, so it's not involved in this announcement, as far as we know.

Lochlomondwhisky:
I can't believe jock123 says he won't miss it...

Nope - not at all! Just as I don't necessarily like everything that some of my best friends say and do, my admiration of the Tintin series doesn't require carte blanche acceptance of everything that Hergé published, no matter how new or old...! :-)
tintinsgf
Member
#14 · Posted: 15 Jun 2015 09:40
jock123:
or simply that they contractually no longer have the rights to it

How could they lost the one for Congo, but not for the other books? Was the contract obtained separately from the other books? Anyway I do have a feeling that the political correctness about the book somehow contributes to the reason.
mct16
Member
#15 · Posted: 15 Jun 2015 17:24 · Edited by: mct16
jock123:
it might be nothing more than financial reality - if it isn't making Egmont money, or is costing more to produce than it returns, or their customers are complaining more than they are praising it

If "Congo" was selling poorly compared to any of the other books, then it logical to assume that it was due to its contents. Given all the controversy surrounding it - human rights lawyer David Enright complaining to the Commission for Racial Equality, Bienvenu Mbutu Mondondo going to court in Belgium, the Brooklyn Public Library placing their copy in a locked back room, with access only by appointment - I think that the PC angle is a fair bet.

It is not the first time that publishers have taken such steps without explaining why. Earlier this year, a British tabloid paper made a major step which was welcomed by the PC feminists but did not make their actual reasons public. All that the rest of the media could do was speculate and some of them did while debating the issue. I think it fair that we be entitled to speculate and debate like any leading journalist.
MT50446
Member
#16 · Posted: 15 Jun 2015 18:00 · Edited by: MT50446
I agree entirely with Mtc16 and his views on the subject mirror mine.
As for the spirit of Tintinologists being to find the facts, it is also a forum to express opinions.
Whatever the facts are and we may never know I still think it's bad news .
As Alph-Art is unfinished shall we withdraw it from publication then?
Every book is valuable and all part of the Tintin Hergé's journey and should be freely available in album form to every generation in my view.
It isn't, and that's how it is, but it is very wrong, whatever the reason, simple as that.
If, and we don't know , it's because it doesn't sell, well that's worse in some ways.
Imagine the 2nd Harry Potter book didn't sell as many copies as the others would it be right to pretend it didn't exist and stop publishing?
FormulaFourteen
Member
#17 · Posted: 21 Jun 2015 05:16
MT50446
I've got to say that I fully agree with both mct16 and MT50446 on this issue as well. Sure, lots of Tintin in the Congo's content isn't PC by today's standards, but that shouldn't hurt it's place in the Tintin canon for purely historical reasons. Also, reading or watching something for entertainment rarely requires you to morally agree with what happens in it. Just because I might enjoy watching Pulp Fiction (an almost purely celebratory look at crime and mean streets) doesn't mean that I condone what the characters do in it... and that's kinda the point, too.

I don't think that I could argue Tintin in the Congo's defense any better than has already been done by others in this forum. I would say, however, that if you read something which challenges your own personal beliefs to the point that you wish it censored or banned, then perhaps you should instead examine the strength of your own beliefs. Banning books has always been an excellent way of breeding social delinquency and will always remain to be so... history does repeat itself. Obviously that's not completely what's happening here, but it's a similar movement.

Herge felt it was a poor representation of his art, work, and himself. Most people I know agree, but still appreciate it in it's historical and canonical context. I think it's a shame it's coming under such heat...

Maybe one day Quentin Tarantino will do a film version of it. (Just kidding...)

Anyway, I know I just rushed to purchase my Egmont copy from Amazon.

Bailey
MT50446
Member
#18 · Posted: 21 Jun 2015 18:35
Agree with you mate ...I was reading Broken Ear earlier and the black characters are drawn in a not very flattering BUT that's his it is and how they were drawn it is. What it is
FormulaFourteen
Member
#19 · Posted: 22 Jun 2015 02:52
MT50446
Wow! Looks like your message got some accidental formatting there! Was there more you were going to say?

Bailey
jock123
Moderator
#20 · Posted: 22 Jun 2015 15:56
FormulaFourteen:
if you read something which challenges your own personal beliefs to the point that you wish it censored or banned, then perhaps you should instead examine the strength of your own beliefs.

It could just as easily be argued that if you read something which is seen by so many to be offensive, out-dated and out-moded, but aren't moved to change, you too should examine the strength of your belief...
As has been said before, not having something because it has ceased to be suitable for the age we live in isn't censorship or banning in the sense you are implying: it is "banning" in the sense that drinking and driving were not immediately seen to be a problem, but, as time has moved on, society has deemed the two to be incompatible with safe, fair and equitable life for the many, and made drink driving an offence (in most places - there may be exceptions). The "right" of an individual to drink and drive was seen to be less than that of the right of society not to have to live with the offence. Same with racism, be it passive, aggressive or by omission.
I've also said before that not publishing something isn't the same as censorship at all: the majority of all books ever written are *not in print* today. That's just time moving along, and leaving a lot of stuff behind.
If one might want to make a case that Congo should be valued as an indicator of colonial mores of the past, that's fine - but one can't then claim to also like/ admire/ enjoy it as a book (which would mean that it still has currency, and isn't being used to illustrate the way things were.
Congo will always be available for academic study/ social discourse/ examination in libraries and collections, along with the trophies of colonialism, and the artifacts of the slave trade. That's also fair enough.

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