In 2020, more than 273 books were challenged or banned. Demands to remove books addressing racism and racial justice or those that shared the stories of Black, Indigenous, or people of color grew in number. At the same time, books addressing themes and issues of concern for LGBTQIA+ people continued to dominate the list.
This post includes the top 10 most challenged books of 2020, and a description of challenges that were reported in the news in 2020, available in the compiled booklet Field Report 2020: Banned & Challenged Books on the ALA Store.
If there was any instance this year in which you asked yourself, “Is this censorship?” then you should report it to the ALA Office of Intellectual Freedom by New Years Eve. If it made your library spidey senses tingle, it is probably worth a report. Read on for more information on what censorship looked like in 2020.
The ALA Office of Intellectual Freedom (“OIF”) encourages everyone to report any and all instances of censorship and challenges to materials (including databases), programs, speakers, filtering and author visits. No matter is too insignificant. If we let instances of censorship slide by or decide to just take certain books off the shelf to avoid conflict or save time, we undermine the First Amendment and our own profession.
Banned Books Week 2020 kicks off on September 27! Throughout the week, libraries, schools, bookstores, and organizations will be hosting events that spotlight the freedom to read — make sure to check out events happening around you!
Here are also some events from the American Library Association and its friends to add to your calendar.
OIF tracked 377 challenges to library, school and university materials and services in 2019. This is a complete list of book titles that were banned, challenged, or restricted during the year.
When school boards deny students the ability to read and engage with literature that depicts the range of human experience on the vague grounds of “controversy,” they diminish their students’ educational experience and disparage the constitutional values of free thought.
I believe that libraries are little engines of democracy. They are the place that anyone can go and educate themselves.
ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) is continuing its partnership with ALA Publishing to offer two exciting eCourses early next year.
The American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) is seeking bloggers for 2020! Here’s what our writers have said about the experience.
A report on a couple of Intellectual Freedom panels at American Library Association’s Annual Conference