Monday, September 28, 2009

Banned Books Week

Banned Books Week is the only national celebration of the freedom to read. It was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than a thousand books have been challenged since 1982. The challenges have occurred in every state and in hundreds of communities. Click here to see a map of book bans and challenges in the US from 2007 to 2009. People challenge books that they say are too sexual or too violent. They object to profanity and slang, and protest against offensive portrayals of racial or religious groups--or positive portrayals of homosexuals. Their targets range from books that explore the latest problems to classic and beloved works of American literature.

This year, it is being celebrated September 26-October 3. In honor of Banned Books Week, I am reading Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck (which I supposedly read junior year of high school) and listening to The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain.

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