Dear Reader

Random musings on reading and books from a librarian in training.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Banned Books Week

This coming Saturday kicks off Banned Books Week. I was very disappointed to learn that there are no events planned in Massachusetts. Check out the Web site, you may find some events in your area. They are also doing things in Second Life.

According to the Web site, Banned Books started more than 25 years ago in response to a sudden increase of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than 1,000 books have been challenged since then. The challenged books range from children's to reference to adult fiction. They include classic works such The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and popular works like the Harry Potter series.

While I understand some parents' concerns with books are serious, some border on the ridiculous. One parent wanted YA Lois Lowry's books removed because she'd objected to references to stuffing and snapping bras in the series. Really?

However, challenging books is not the answer. Just because one person finds a book objectionable does not give them the right to prevent others from reading it. It's important, I think, to remember that books are still under attack and we should continue to fight for the freedom to read.

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