I remembered "The Jungle Book", by Rudyard Kipling, one of my favorite books when I was ten, and how much a scene had troubled me back then. My edition had a picture depicting the paragraph below, with Mowgli getting whacked by Baloo. I have no idea why they added an illustration to this particular paragraph, when they had so many other options...
The story came to my mind last week, when I wanted to buy the unabridged version for my classics collection. But I didn't buy it in the end. Don't know why.
While the scene has nothing weird inside, I kept reading it again and again, and looking at the picture next to it. Anyway, keep in mind that I was only ten, will you? It was my only book with a spanking picture inside. It was quite easy for me to identify with another ten year old.
Baloo said to Bagheera, one day when Mowgli had been cuffed and run off in
a temper, "A man's cub is a man's cub, and he must learn all the Law of the
"But think how small he is," said the Black Panther, who would have
spoiled Mowgli if he had had his own way. "How can his little head carry all thy
"Is there anything in the jungle too little to be killed? No. That is
why I teach him these things, and that is why I hit him, very softly, when he
"Softly! What dost thou know of softness, old Iron-feet?"
Bagheera grunted. "His face is all bruised today by thy—softness. Ugh."
"Better he should be bruised from head to foot by me who love him than
that he should come to harm through ignorance," Baloo answered very earnestly.
"I am now teaching him the Master Words of the Jungle that shall protect him
with the birds and the Snake People, and all that hunt on four feet, except his
own pack. He can now claim protection, if he will only remember the words, from
all in the jungle. Is not that worth a little beating?"