Why Is It Banned?
July 27, 2014
To be honest, I had never given much thought to banned books. It’s actually kind of embarrassing to admit, seeing as I was an English Literature major in college, am currently a library science student, and a librarian! We even participate in Banned Books Week (September 21-27, 2014) every year, but I had never really given much thought to why certain books are challenged.
In my Children’s Literature class, we discussed banned books, including the Captain Underpants series. And, one of my coworkers recently did a book display of challenged titles. So, I started reading about why certain books are banned.
Did you know that Captain Underpants is challenged for reasons such as offensive language, unsuited for age group, and violence?
The Hunger Games trilogy is challenged because of religious viewpoint and is also considered to be unsuited to age group.
How about the classic, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn? It is one of the most-challenged books of all time because of language used within the book.
Information on the official Banned Books Week website says, “Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than 11,300 books have been challenged since 1982 according to the American Library Association. There were 307 challenges reported to the Office of Intellectual Freedom in 2013, and many more go unreported.”
Banned Books Week is the national book community's annual celebration of the freedom to read, but you don't only have to celebrate this freedom during one week of the year! Take the next couple of months leading up to Banned Books Week, held September 21-27, 2014, to read some of these challenged books. You can find more information on challenged titles on the official Banned Books Week website.