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Banned Books Week

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Banned Books Week

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Book banning has been a recurring phenomenon throughout history, with governments and individuals attempting to suppress the spread of ideas they deem dangerous or subversive. However, what one person finds offensive may be cherished by another. Because ideas of what may or may not be acceptable are constantly changing, so too are the titles that some seek to ban, resulting in an exercise in futility. 

Banned books don’t disappear. In fact, book banning often has the opposite effect of what is intended, generating curiosity and interest in the titles. Over time, many titles become so widely accepted that modern readers are shocked to find them on the list of censored books. 

For the 2023 Banned Books Week, Mid-Continent Public Library highlighted banned books of years past, with each branch home to one book you may be surprised to see on a list of censored books.  

Mid-Continent Public Library stands firmly in support of the freedom to read. As always, we encourage individuals and families to determine what materials best fit their needs. The Library’s collection is home to books, movies, music, and resources filled with a nearly infinite spectrum of ideas for yesterday, today, and always.  

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

by Mark Twain

Banned for...

offensive language and racist terminology

The Adventures of Captain Underpants

by Dav Pilkey

Banned for...

encouraging disruptive behavior

Blubber

by Judy Blume

Banned for...

not teaching good morals

Brave New World

by Aldous Huxley

Banned for...

themes of promiscuity, drug use, and suicide

The Call of the Wild

by Jack London

Banned for...

dark tone and bloody violence

Catch-22

by Joseph Heller

Banned for...

profane and inappropriate language

Charlotte's Web

by E.B. White

Banned for...

talking animals

Fahrenheit 451

by Ray Bradbury

Banned for...

vulgarity and discussions of drugs

Goosebumps: Welcome to Dead House

by R.L. Stine

Banned for...

being too frightening for kids

The Great Gatsby

by F. Scot Fitzgerald

Banned for...

violence, adultery, and language

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

by J.K. Rowling

Banned for...

violence, anti-family themes, and the occult

Hop on Pop

by Dr. Seuss

Banned for...

encouraging violence against fathers

James and the Giant Peach

by Roald Dahl

Banned for...

profanity and drinking

Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus

by Barbara Park

Banned for...

poor social values and bad grammar and spelling

The Lorax

by Dr. Seuss

Banned for...

negatively portraying the logging industry

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

by Alvin Schwartz

Banned for...

being unsuitable for the age group, violence, and occult

To Kill a Mockingbird

by Harper Lee

Banned for...

offensive language and mention of rape

Where the Sidewalk Ends

by Shel Silverstein

Banned for...

showing disrespect for any authority

Where's Waldo?

by Martin Handford

Banned for...

lewd illustrations

Where the Wild Things Are

by Maurice Sendak

Banned for...

the main character being sent to bed without dinner

A Wrinkle in Time

by Madeleine L'Engle

Banned for...

entanglements with religion

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