Slaughterhouse-Five has been subject to banning, challenges and even burning for decades. The American Library Association lists the title in it’s Banned and Challenged Classics page, citing a book burning in North Dakota in 1973 and a variety of bans and challenges due to language, sexual references and even because it “contains and makes references to religious matters.” ALA notes only two instances of retention after the book was challenged.
Recently, I was able to speak to Ms. Larson regarding this situation. Her commitment to intellectual freedom and dedication to fostering an antiracist learning environment for her students is evident in her discussion of the challenge to Stamped. Not every educator is in the position to fight back against a challenge: it can be a risk to their professional reputation or even their job security. But if they’re able to do so, it always makes a difference, even if censorship prevails in that particular incident. As Ms. Larson states below: “Fight for the kids. They will know. They always know.”
Celebrate Freedom to Read Week February 21st to the 27th by learning more about book challenges, catching up on freedom of expression news, or curling up with your favorite banned book! This post recognizes banned author Stephenie Meyer. While critics fault Twilight for negative depictions and poor writing, I prefer to think I enjoy the series for its nuanced exploration of privacy. Escape to the mossy forests of Forks and a time before high-speed internet, smartphones, and social media to explore the privacy themes in Twilight!
“Simulpub” is a portmanteau of “simultaneously” and “publish” that refers to manga chapters which are published at the exact same time in Japan in Japanese and globally in English via various digital platforms.
“Did you see this? A textbook for a class on anime at Kent State was challenged by state reps,” my coworker told me a few weeks ago. I read the entire debacle and I rolled my eyes so hard I think I got a headache. Another ignorant American who doesn’t understand another culture but also wants to enforce American morality upon it, I thought. But I digress – by now we all know the story about Anime From Akira to Howl’s Moving Castle and its challenge. If you would like to know more about anime and how it relates to western comic books/graphic novels, fear not! I, Gina the old millennial otaku, will help you.
There’s been a marked increase in challenges of children’s books that combat racism and immigrant bias. With social media and citizen journalism, there have been many instances of police brutality that have been recorded in the past couple of years. With this, challenges of children’s books addressing police brutality and racism have risen.
The Poet X and its perceived challenge to the Establishment Clause is called into question by a North Carolina couple seeking to shield their son from “negative” depictions of Catholicism in fiction provided by the local public school system.
Last month, we celebrated Mercer Mayer’s birthday! Well-known for the Little Critter and Little Monster series, we also recognize his books which used striking and frightening illustrations to engage young readers and teach them about courage.
David Sedaris was born on this day in 1956. He is an award winning author and comedian, and he is a regular, longtime contributor to The New Yorker and the National Public Radio (NPR) show This American Life. His essays are known for their satirical and self-deprecating humor, and read like diary entries (which many of them are), a window into Sedaris’ clever mind.
Author, poet, and artist Sandra Cisneros celebrates her birthday today.