Banned Book Week

Current Theme Song (aka what's playing on my ipod right now): Arrival To Earth by Steven Jablonsky [Transformers soundtrack].

Here in America, once a year, we celebrate the freedom to share ideas and information as a basic human right. It's called Banned Book Week and is usually celebrated in the last week of September into the first week of October. If you in any part of the world have something like this, I am so happy for you. Sharing ideas is one of the best ways to fight against ignorance. It is why I love books so much, because of the possibility they contain in them. They can change lives.

 Because of that, Banned Book Week holds a special place in my heart. Books that are considered "dangerous" are highlighted, which is the kind of ironic humor I take great pleasure in. Do I like all of the books that have been challenged (assuming I've read all of them)? No, I don't. There are some books I really don't like, probably for the very reason they are being challenged/banned. BUT. Just because I did not like a book for whatever reason, does not give me the right to dictate what you are anyone else can read. This ability, this freedom is huge, and I am in awe to possess it. So--go Banned Book Week! Read something daring. Be a rebel. :)

HERE is a list of books that have been challenged and/or banned in the last six years. Six years. That's nothing. I hope I copied the link right. It should pop up with a PDF for you (thanks to NCTE for compiling this).

Here is a list of some banned/challenged books you can read in less than a day (some in under ten minutes):

And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richards and Peter Parnell.

The Giver by Lois Lowry

Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh

A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein

James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl

In Our Mothers' House by Patricia Polacco

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak.

The Lorax by Dr. Seuss.

And these are some books that I am still just scratching my head as to why on earth they've been challenged (within the last six years, mind you).

The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien - Dragons are scary? It is going to convert you to Satanism?

Writing Magic: Creating Stories that Fly by Gail Carson Levine - This is a non-fiction book on writing, people. By the same author as Ella Enchanted. My eyebrows are still raised on this one.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens - umm?... (Ghosts are evil???)

So go forth! Celebrate your freedom to read! Flaunt it, baby!


Meg said...

Ugh! I didn't realize Flowers for Algernon was on the list...what a powerful story. I taught it to my 8th graders last year and it opened up a lot of their eyes to what really makes a person "smart."

Heather Zundel said...

Yep. That one is for "sexuality and drug use" I believe. I love that story. I read the short story version in jr. high. I've been wanting to read the whole novel.