Timeline entry for 2000: Captain Underpants

Leading up to Banned Books Week 2012, ALA will highlight one book from its new timeline of banned and challenged books each day. Today we feature the year 2000 and the “Captain Underpants” series, by Dav Pilkey.

Captain Underpants book coverThe “Captain Underpants” series of children’s books was removed from the Maple Hill School in Naugatuck, CT in 2000, due to concerns that they caused unruly behavior among children. The books were also challenged but retained at the Orfordville, WI Elementary School library. A parent charged that they taught students to be disrespectful; not to obey authority; not to obey the law, including God’s law; improper spelling; to make excuses and lie to escape responsibility; to make fun of what people wear; and poor nutrition. The “Captain Underpants” books effectively use humor and illustrations to captivate young readers, particularly “reluctant readers” who may not otherwise enjoy reading, and inspire with their stories of ingenuity and imagination.

For more information about Banned Books Week, please visit www.ala.org/bbooks.