September 25th to October 1st is Banned Books week – a week that celebrates the freedom we all have to read whatever we want along with open access to all types of information. It supports the right to express ourselves and our ideas freely, even if those ideas are unorthodox or unpopular. Banned Books week aims to draw attention to the potential issues associated with censorship.
All across the country many books- popular, classic, picture and other kinds of books- have been accused of being inappropriate. Many of these challenged books will go on to be “Banned” and possibly removed from shelves in schools and libraries. Here’s a small sampling:
- Harry Potter(series), by J.K. Rowling
- Captain Underpants(series), by Dav Pilkey
- Goosebumps(series), by R.L. Stine
- Bridge To Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson
- And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson/Peter Parnell
- Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret, by Judy Blume
All of these books have one thing in common- they have been challenged as “inappropriate” books. And they are only a small representation of books that have been challenged. Check out this list of the 100 most often challenged books from 2000-2009. Some of the tittles may surprise you.
Many of us have read at least one book on the above top 100 list. Support the efforts of librarians, teachers, and community members by standing up for the freedom to read. Find more information about ways to get involved and access promotional materials. You can also contact the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom at 1-800-545-2433, ext. 4226, or firstname.lastname@example.org.