ALA Graphic: Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us. Banned Books Week September 26 - October 2, 2021

Jason Reynolds Named Inaugural Honorary Chair of Banned Books Week

Banned Books Week has never had an honorary chair before but unprecedented times call for unprecedented measures. Jason Reynolds will be the first honorary chair of Banned Books Week and he is excited about it! This year marks the 39th celebration of Banned Books Week since its first celebratory year in 1982. The 2021 theme is Books Unite Us; Censorship Divides Us and it will take place from September 26th to October 2nd.

Vail School District Slaughterhouse-five

History Repeated: the Trials of Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five

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.

Text reads Censorship is a Dead End. Find Your Freedom to Read. To the left of the text is an open book with a shadow of a figure standing in front of it.

Banned Books Week 2020: A Schedule of Virtual Events

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.

Find the Library at your Place

“Fundamental to life”: Library Workers, Advocates Share Predictions, Freedom to Read Experiences Ahead of National Library Week

“The right to make my own choice is fundamental to life, and intellectual freedom with the right to choose what to read is necessary to maintain what I believe is inherent to all of us,” says Salt Lake County librarian Wanda Mae Huffaker. In anticipation of National Library Week 2020 and the State of America’s Libraries report announcing the Top 10 Most Challenged Books of 2019, we share book challenge experiences, 2019 top challenged title predictions, and our passion for the freedom to read.