The air is starting to hold a chill and the leaves are starting their last hurrah… and yes, Banned Book Week is approaching fast. For the fourth year in a row I will be hosting one of my favorite reading events – Banned Book Week.
So Sheila, what exactly do you mean by banned books?
Thank you for asking! Banned Books are books that have been challenged to be removed from a location – ie… Library, school, book stores, etc… because someone believes that the book is unsuitable for many reasons: language, subject material, graphic, sexual, suggestive, you name it – someone will try to ban or challenge it.
What is the difference between a challenge or banning?
A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group. A banning is the removal of those materials. Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting the access of others. Due to the commitment of librarians, teachers, parents, students and other concerned citizens, most challenges are unsuccessful and most materials are retained in the school curriculum or library collection.
What sort of books are we talking about here Sheila?
You would be shocked. I was! We are talking (and this is just to name a few…)
Charlotte’s Web (talking animals int he work of Satan!)
Lord Of The Rings (Satanic!)
The Harry Potter Books (Witchcraft!)
Huckleberry Finn (language!)
Tom and Huck (boys behaving badly!)
To Kill A Mockingbird (Use of the “N” word)
Fahrenheit 451 (for _get this- burning of books and banning people from reading)
Hunger Games (kids killing kids)
Little Red Riding Hood (the cover appears that “Red” just might have wine in that basket for Grandma)
It would actually be funny if it were not true. The list goes on and on including most of our classics. Here is a more extensive list of some of the top banned books through the years.
Why do I get involved?
There are some amazing reads on this list. For the past 4 years I have dedicated Banned Book Week to only read banned books and because of that I have read some great classics, re-read some childhood favorites, and explored new books to me as well.
Do not get me wrong – being pro-banned books does not mean that I want to read every banned book. For instance, I have no interest whatsoever to read 50 Shades Of Gray. However, I do not have the right to say that because I choose not to read it that no one can. That is the difference.
As in the past years, I am looking for awesome people like you to join me during September 21 – 27 to either: share a favorite banned book post, read and review a banned book, write a post about why banning is wrong or a personal experience with a banned book in your area, etc… Sign up below and I will connect with you on the day that you are willing to post. Banned Book Awareness is a great way to explore amazing reads and remind us that we have the freedom to read what we choose.
There are lists of Banned Books everywhere and I have yet to find an amazing all inclusive one, but here are a few areas to look for a list so your Banned Book Reading Week:
I hope you will join me! I will have a banned book post up every day and off the top of my head I believe I will be reading Uncle Tom’s Cabin, In Cold Blood (our book club read for October), and I have always wanted to read Lord Of The Flies.