Last Update 0:5
Wednesday, 16 October 2019

Indonesia orders recall of 'vulgar' children's sex-education book

Reuters , Wednesday 22 Feb 2017
Views: 2058
Views: 2058

Indonesia has ordered a publisher to withdraw a sex-education book for children, which addresses the subject of masturbation, for being too vulgar.

The publisher of "I Dare to Sleep Alone and I Learn to Control Myself" apologised for causing any offence but said the book aimed to help parents teach children how to protect themselves from sexual harassment.

The Education Ministry said the book, written by Fita Chakra, contained pornographic content and cited a depiction of a cartoon boy's thoughts as he hugs a bolster pillow when he can't sleep. It also includes a part where the boy finds a new game of putting his hand inside his trousers.

"The content of the book is not appropriate for children. It's too vulgar," the ministry said in a statement, adding the publisher must recall the book or face "strict sanction".

Sex education in Indonesia, which has the world's largest Muslim population, is uncommon and casual conversations about sex are considered taboo.

Awaluddin Tjalla, head of the ministry's centre of curriculum and books, also said the ministry was speaking to an association of publishers to urge it to take action against the publisher. He did not elaborate.

The author was not immediately available for comment, but the publisher, Tiga Serangkai, said it had consulted psychologists as well as paediatricians when compiling the book.

"Our intention in launching the book was so that we can help parents explain to children about the importance of protecting themselves ... from people with ill-intention towards them," it said in a statement.

The book also contained educational material on sexually transmitted diseases and "basic knowledge that is important for a child to know from early age", it said.

On its Instagram account, Tiga Serangkai said: "We understand that some in our society are not ready for sex education at an early age", adding that those who had bought the book could return it and get a refund.

The publisher said the book had been withdrawn since December, but that it had found copies still on sale in some online stores.

Some Indonesians turned to social media to complain. An Instagram user with handler @revitatiaman said: "I've seen a few pages of the book and I don't think there's any education in here. Only damaging a child's moral and brain."

"It is better to soothe a kid who is learning to sleep by himself at night through reading or reciting a praying," said @pipijippie. "For Muslims, it can be done by reading the Koran, not by introducing the kid to sexual activity."

Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.