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The BBC has reported that a charity for abuse victims is planning to burn copies of “Fifty Shades of Grey” by E.L. James.
Clare Phillipson, of Wearside Women in Need in the UK, said the books were “vile” and urged women to drop off copies to her Washington office for a bonfire on 5 November.
The book deals with the love (and bondage/dominance/sadomasochism) story between Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey and has quickly become the fastest selling paperback of all time.
For many, it has been attributed as the key ingredient to spicing up a stale relationship and has even had some predicting a “Fifty Shades of Grey”-inspired baby boom.
But the content, which includes scenes where a domineering billionaire spanks and beats a young virgin with a belt, has not been as warmly welcomed by some.
“I do not think I can put into words how vile I think this book is and how dangerous I think the idea is that you get a sophisticated but naive, young women and a much richer, abusive older man who beats her up and does some dreadful things to her sexually,” said Phillipson.
Phillipson, who said she had read two-thirds of the first book before she gave up “in disgust”, said she was furious that libraries throughout the North East were ordering extra copies of the trilogy to cope with demand.
“My main objection is that at a time when local authorities are making cuts to outreach and refuge services for women experiencing domestic violence, we have libraries wasting and grossly misusing public to buy a book which says: ‘domestic violence is sexy’,” she said.
Wearside Women in Need are not the only detractors though, with the associated press reporting that libraries in the United States, including Wisconsin, Georgia and Florida have all either refused to order the books or have pulled them from shelves.
Publisher Random House responded, saying: “The sex scenes are entirely consensual.”