Library Resources | September 25, 2017
Banned Books Week is a celebration and reminder of our freedom to read, highlighting the value of free and open access to information.
Banned Books Week is upon us, and libraries in the United States and around the world are getting ready. Started in 1982 by the American Library Association (ALA), Banned Books Week is observed every year as a celebration and reminder of our freedom to read. According to ALA, Banned Books Week is generally held during the last week of September and “highlights the value of free and open access to information.” Books are typically banned or challenged in schools and libraries for sexual or violent content, or for expressing religious or political ideas.
Many libraries have commemorated the event in creative ways, and this year is no different: Washington D.C.’s library foundation has hidden banned books around the city and provided clues for patrons to find them, scavenger-hunt style; the town of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, is putting on a show titled “Banned Together: A Censorship Cabaret,” in which local actors and singers will perform songs and scenes from banned plays and musicals; and in Chicago, Illinois, City Lit Theater Company is hosting a 60-minute program which features five-minute readings from the top ten challenged books of 2016.
However, banning books isn't just something that happens in the United States. Other countries have joined the cause in commemorating Banned Books Week. For example, artist Marta Minujín built a full-sized Parthenon replica using over 100,000 banned books in Kassel, Germany, a site that Nazis once used to burn thousands of books. Even today, governments still ban books for whole countries.
[Banned Book Week] highlights the value of free and open access to information.
For more Banned Book recommendations, check out our e-book collection of Banned and Challenged Books.
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