Every year the Freedom to Read Foundation awards libraries with grants to facilitate programming, outreach, displays and other promotional work around Banned Books Week. These grants are funded out of the Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund. This year’s banned book week theme is “Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us.” and will take place at libraries, schools, and booksellers around the country on Sept. 26-Oct. 2, 2021. This year four public libraries and one school library were awarded grants.
Banned Books Week is just around the corner (Sept. 26 – Oct. 2, 2021)! Here’s how some libraries, bookstores, and museums are celebrating!
Since its creation in 2015, Drag Queen Storytime or Drag Queen Story Hour (DQSH), as the official organization calls it, has gained as much negative attention as it has positive among library patrons and community members.. In 2019, 30 challenges were reported to the OIF for Drag Queen Storytimes and other Pride related events. But there are many Drag Queen Storytime fans and advocates out there as well, with LGBT-friendly churches stepping in to host events when libraries no longer can, to people coming to these events to show their love and support in the face of angry protesters. And while these programs tend to draw in big crowds because they are fun, they also have educational benefits as well.
Show off your best anti-censorship programs and displays, and apply now through June 4 for a Banned Books Week Celebration Grant.
The ALSC Intellectual Freedom Committee has just released their Intellectual Freedom Programming Toolkit. Intellectual freedom is not just for Banned Books Week, and this toolkit offers ways to provide bitesize servings of important IF concepts at any time of year. Rather than replacing existing programs with IF-centered activities, we can embed those ideas in popular programming that’s already being done.
Learn more about how ALA is helping librarians learn more about media literacy through its new publication “Media Literacy in the Library,” featuring an interview with 2 contributors, Dr. Nicole A. Cooke and Kristen Calvert.
There seems to be an intellectual freedom trend with Libraries being attacked from within by their Library Boards. No matter who wins these debates, it is the community that will always lose. The most recent example comes out of Lafayette, Louisiana. Here, the Board rejected a grant for a voting rights program because it did not feature both sides.
ALA President Julius C. Jefferson and United for Libraries President David Paige express concerns about censoring library programming because of political viewpoints.
Have you ever put together a really good Banned Books Week display? I loved setting up my annual display and hearing parents discuss The First Amendment, censorship, and literature with their children while working my reference desk shifts. As we all know, this year is totally different so here are some Banned Books Week ideas from a youth librarian!
This year’s Banned Books Week (September 27 – October 3) will look different. Here are 40 ideas on how to celebrate virtually, on social media, and maintaining social distance.