Ashland, Ore.– After 14 years of business in Ashland a bookstore that sells banned and censored books will be closing their doors this fall. The owner of “Shakespeare Books and Antiques”, Judi Honore, says a dispute with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival has not only hurt her bottom line, it’s also effected her personal life.
“I’ve been told I’m racist,” Honore says.
She’s decided to close her store following a dispute with OSF.
Eddie Wallace Associate Director of Communications for OSF sees it differently and says they’re not the reason she’s shutting her doors.
“All I can say is it’s an interesting piece of fiction that she is writing,” Wallace says.
We first told you about the dispute between Honore and OSF last month when a controversial book cover in the store’s window display was called into question.
According to Wallace, four actors with OSF asked Honore to move the book titled “Little Black Sambo”, about a young Indian boy, from the front window.
“I said ok, great, come in, and we’ll move it together,” agrees Honore.
But OSF executives soon wrote her, saying they had instructed their staff not to patronize the bookstore for any festival related goods or services. According to Honore, the move hurt her business driving down sales significantly in August.
“The festival withholding business from the store is not the reason for Judi encountering economic difficulties,” says Wallace.
Still Honore says she stands by her decision to display the book and others like it.
“My position is that I stood up for my rights, I stood up for what I feel is right.”
Even though she says she probably could wait to see if the store will bounce back, she’s now canceled her lease saying the stress and emotional toll on her personal life isn’t worth it.
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