Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Banned Books Week: Censorship and Challenged Books

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 464 challenges reported to the Office of Intellectual Freedom in 2012, and many more go unreported. Check out this website to read more about frequently challenged books!

The 10 most challenged titles of 2012 were:

1. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey; [Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group]

2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie; [Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group]

3. Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher; [Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group]

4. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James; [Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit]

5. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson; [Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group]

6. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini; [Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit]

7. Looking for Alaska, by John Green; [Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group]

8. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz; [Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence]

9. The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls; [Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit]

10. Beloved, by Toni Morrison; [Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence]

And don’t forget to explore the following pages for listings of banned/challenged books!