Earlier this week, Weird Tales editor Marvin Kaye said the magazine would run an excerpt from the young adult novel that includes some ugly racial stereotypes. io9 wrote a long post collecting the raging debate surrounding the editor’s (now removed) defense of the novel. Here is an excerpt from Harlacher’s statement:
I have not read the novel, but have gone over its online presence today. I have no need to read it. I saw the blackface video and read the excerpts the author and publisher chose to make available. I must conclude that the use of the powerful symbols of white people forced to wear blackface to escape the sun, white women lusting after black “beast men,” the “pearls” and “coals,” etc., is goddamned ridiculous and offensive. It seems like the work of someone who does not understand the power of what she is playing with. Marvin says if you read the whole book, she explains her use of this imagery, and it ends up as a plea for tolerance. I say, so what. And that is the position of Weird Tales — and upon reviewing the video and other materials, Marvin is in full agreement. I deeply apologize to all who were offended by our association with this book. I am offended by it. I fully respect those who have been writing negative things about us today. You are correct.
One year ago, Weird Tales cut editor Ann VanderMeer after five years at the magazine. Many staffers were released as well.
If you want to find out more about Foyt’s controversial novel, follow this link to see the book’s website. The site automatically plays a book trailer for the novel, three-minute monologue by an actress in blackface.