Read a Banned Book

Banned Book Week Film: Storm Center

A small town librarian (Bette Davis) is branded a Communist by local politicians when she refuses to remove a controversial book fromthe shelves.

MARVIN AUDITORIUM,SUNDAY SEPT 25,6-8PM

Open Mic Night-With the Banned

Enjoy performances from talented local teens and learn about books that have been challenged at this special Banned Books Week-themed Open Mic Night.  Stand up to censorship by reading from a banned book on stage. Performers can sign up the night of the event to be put on the schedule.

THE EDGE,WEDNESDAY SEPT 28,4-5:30PM

Don’t Read That! A Look at Banned and Challenged Books

From Harper Lee to Stephanie Meyer, books for young adults have challenged the mind and inspired new ideas.  In some cases the books themselves have been challenged by censors.  Join us for an entertaining look at several authors and their taboo titles.

THE EDGE,THURSDAY SEPT 29,6-7PM

  • Rob Ramcharan

    I looked at the American Library Association’s top ten list of banned and challenged books, then I compared the list for this year against the TSCPL card catalog. It turns out that nine of the ten are listed as being in the library’s collection, while the tenth is freely available at amazon.com and Barnes and Noble. So, my question is, in what meaningful sense is a book “banned” if anyone who wants to read it can read it? Most of the allegedly “banned” books are not banned in the sense that the government is putting people in jail for possessing them (as happens with the Bible in places like Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, for example), but are “banned” in the sense that parents are not wanting their children to read them in public school classrooms at taxpayer expense. I notice also that some of the books that are not on the list are books nobody thinks should be available to anybody; books like “The Anarchist’s Cookbook” or the North American Man-Boy Love Association’s handbook for child molesters. Nor do any of the 11,002 amazon.com listings for books containing the F-word in the title appear on the ALA list. Does the fact that they don’t appear in the TSCPL catalog make them “banned”? And how many of the 1,335,475 books published in 2009 in this country did TSCPL add to its collection (see: http://www.bowkerinfo.com/pubtrack/AnnualBookProduction2010/ISBN_Output_2002-2010.pdf)? Were the rest “banned”? I don’t think so.
    My point is, there are such things as banned books. In this country, there are not as many as the librarians would have us believe.

  • Brian

    Bans on books can take place at a national or local level. Hundreds of books are challenged each year in libraries all across the country. A challenge is a formal, written complaint requesting a book be removed from library shelves or school cirriculum. These are the types of challenges that are referred to on the ALA’s list of most challenged materials. 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 collections. Banned Books Week creates awareness that while not every book is intended for every reader, each of us has the right to decide for ourselves what to read, listen to or view.