Jung said that if Drama was banned from his middle school library — a place where he received most of his books — he might not have picked it up himself; he needed a “wise librarian” to recommend it to him.
I think the current political climate is reminding those of us willing to pay attention and remember, how dangerous attempts at thoughtless mind control can be, and how important the free exchange of ideas is to a true democracy.
Books have the powerful ability to open minds and be a messenger of peace and understanding, where characters, their voices and stories can transform social attitudes towards others by illustrating our shared humanity.
Books freed, nurtured, and challenged me. African Americans, having been denied literacy during slavery, have a special affinity for reading and writing as basic civil rights. While there weren’t many diverse books when I was growing up (and there still aren’t enough!), character-driven stories opened new landscapes, new possibilities for living, and deepened my empathy.
By: James LaRue Librarianship faces a crisis, resulting from the intersection of five trends: the rise of challenges to diverse content, the demand for more diverse content, the failure of […]
If you look at the first three reasons for book banning, you can see that they all are based on some kind of moral code. Some belief that these books contain material that is morally wrong or offensive. The fact that books about race and LGBTQIA issues are banned for these reasons is problematic and hurtful.
In an increasingly digital world, it is no surprise that the lines between print and online media are likewise becoming blurrier. Nearly every type of print media has a digital counterpart. As a result, the library profession’s attention and efforts to preserve resource access must move beyond protecting print materials to include digital and online materials access as well.
As we celebrate Banned Books Week and the freedom to read, we focus on Banned Websites Awareness Day and the “overly restrictive blocking of legitimate, educational websites and academically useful social networking tools in schools and school libraries.”
Then Godless won a National Book Award. At the awards ceremony, Judy Blume delivered a passionate speech about censorship. Later that evening, after one too many glasses of wine, I said to her, “Hey Judy, how do I get my book challenged?” She replied, in a tone that made me think of dry ice, “It will happen, and you will not like it.”
Even if you don’t think the reader is “ready” for the nuances of a given book, they’ll gain something from the experience. It doesn’t need to be the same as what you got from the book. Either that, or they’ll decide the experience isn’t enjoyable and stop on their own. But when we learn young that certain books aren’t for us, those lessons go deep. We learn that certain information isn’t for us and that certain ways of being aren’t for us. We are closed off to entire swaths of the world, and of the worlds that people imagine and create for us.