Publishers have removed a story from The World’s Worst Children that contained racist stereotypes about Asians, The Guardian reports.
The World’s Worst Children is an anthology featuring ten stories about misbehaving children. It was written by author and comedian David Walliams.
One of the stories Walliams included in the anthology is “Brian Wong, Who Was Never, Ever Wrong.” Earlier this year, podcaster Georgie Ma pointed out that the book was “normalizing jokes on minorities from a young age,” BBC reports.
Brian’s character exemplifies Asian stereotypes, like being good at math. His name even reflects a casually racist joke.
“‘Wong’ and ‘wrong’ are two words that are commonly used in playgrounds to pick on someone if their surname is Wong,” Ma explained to The Bookseller.
Ma said that even the illustrations drew on racist stereotypes.
“He wears glasses, he looks like a nerd, he’s got small eyes… they’re all harmful stereotypes,” she toldThe Bookseller.
She added that she did not want her toddler to read a story that spreads harmful stereotypes about Chinese culture.
HarperCollins Children’s Books confirmed that it would not publish the story in future editions of The World’s Worst Children.
“In consultation with our author and illustrator [Tony Ross] we can confirm that a new story will be written to replace ‘Brian Wong’ in future editions of The World’s Worst Children,” a statement from HarperCollins Children’s said, according to the BBC.
David Walliams has not commented on the story.
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