So, as you may or may not have heard, a new edition of Twain's Huckleberry Finn is being released by NewSouth Books upon suggestion of "Mark Twain Scholar" Alan Gribben. What's significant about this release is that all 219 occurrences of the word "nigger" in Finn are being replaced with the word "slave" in an effort, so Gribben says, to make this classic more teachable/accessible to the general reader. This article has the full story. Having read and thoroughly discussed this book with some very competent people over the years, I think this is really a travesty and insult to both Twain and those who have yet to read Finn. Yes the word makes us uncomfortable in modern, socially-aware society, but Twain wrote this book during a very different time to (I believe) point out the effects of the racist southern culture of the era, and "nigger" was a very commonly used word back then. So what do you think? Gribben claims he's trying to make the book less likely to get banned in schools (as it frequently is) and easier for students to access, while I've already presented my case (very briefly) for why this is a bad idea.