When I took my first job as a collection librarian, I assumed that most of the challenged books at public libraries fell into the familiar categories we see in the “frequently banned and challenged” lists that are featured during Banned Books Week: Harry Potter; Go Ask Alice; Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. I was wrong.
Woolf had a keen sense of the need for equitable access, access to both a physical space for thinking and to intellectual nourishment, in order for women to be empowered to create.
Despite being frequently challenged, Cormier continued to write these mature themes; he felt they were an important window for young adults to view the world beyond them.
“I believe theater is there to broaden your mind, to really look at the way you view the world to explore the idea that maybe you’re not looking at it as widely as you can.”
Columbia County, Georgia, Superintendent Sandra Carraway has limited students’ access to Nic Stone’s novel Dear Martin, calling it unacceptable and extreme. But as editor and publisher Phoebe Yeh responds, the book provides an accessible way for students to understand what is happening in their own backyards.
My goal is to share my story and shake off a little of that remaining fear, and to encourage others in my position to keep moving forward in support of the intellectual freedom rights of all members of a school community. I have a right to tell my story, and you have a right to tell yours.
There will always be silly reasons for attempting to ban a book, but I would have thought that there wasn’t anything to challenge about holiday books. I mean, Santa, reindeer, twinkly lights, Hallmark movies, present exchanges, good will towards men? What is there to object? However, as it turns out, I was wrong; there are attempts to challenge books about the most wonderful time of the year.
By: guest contributor Richard Price. Loudoun County Public Schools took an important first step towards inclusive support of all students with its diverse classroom libraries initiative. We can only hope that it will not bend to the forces of intolerance. Schools and libraries have a public duty to depict the world as it actual is and not as some people wish it were.
Culture and education are the lethal weapons against all kinds of fundamentalism.
ALA responds, “In particular, the public library has a responsibility to represent a broad range of materials in its collection and to meet the needs of everyone in the community it serves – not just the most vocal, the most powerful, or even the majority.”