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Last Updated: Thursday, 12 July 2007, 13:51 GMT 14:51 UK
Bid to ban 'racist' Tintin book
Tintin in the Congo
Tintin was created by Belgian writer and illustrator Herge
The Commission for Racial Equality (CRE) is calling on high street books to pull a Tintin adventure from its shelves over claims it is racist.

Complaints about Tintin in the Congo have led to Borders and Waterstones moving it to their adult section.

A spokeswoman said the book contained "words of hideous racial prejudice, where the 'savage natives' look like monkeys and talk like imbeciles".

Borders said they are committed to let their "customers make the choice".

'Racist claptrap'

The store's spokesman added: "Naturally, some of the thousands of books and music selections we carry could be considered controversial or objectionable depending on individual political views, tastes and interests."

A Waterstones spokesman said: "We have reviewed the title's situation and are moving it away from the other Tintin titles into the graphic novel section."

The CRE spokewoman said: "How and why do Borders think that it's okay to peddle such racist material?"

"The only place that it might be acceptable for this to be displayed would be in a museum, with a big sign saying 'old-fashioned, racist claptrap.'

"It's high time that they reconsidered their decision and removed this from their shelves," she added.

The book's publishers Egmont said the book comes with a warning that it features "bourgeois, paternalistic stereotypes of the period - an interpretation some readers may find offensive".

The Tintin adventures were written by Belgian author Herge - real name Georges Prosper Remi - from 1929 until his death in 1983.

He continued to revise his books after their publication, and admitted embarrassment over some of the views they expressed.

A scene in Tintin in the Congo in which the eponymous hero gave a geography lesson to Africans about Belgium was later changed to a maths class.

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