professornana (professornana) wrote,

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Banned Books Week: Celebrating FREADOM

Last night was the first #nctechat to open Banned Books Week. Tweets flew past my eyes at an alarming rate. Folks were tweeting more than an hour before the scheduled start time (me, too) and did not leave the chat when it officially ended (I did a Ferris Bueller and told them to go home, but still they lingered). Teachers, librarians, and authors (I saw you lurking guys) made the questions we had so carefully prepared unnecessary as voices were raised against censorship and for the freedom to read.

Here is the link to the NCTE Anti-Censorship Center with TONS of resources: including the archive for the Twitter chat coming soon. And here is the Storify of the chat:

A link to the ALA Banned Books site should provide some good reading material for the week: And while you are at it, know thine enemy and read what organized efforts are being taken to ban books. Visit PARENTS AGAINST BAD BOOKS IN SCHOOL at and COMMON SENSE MEDIA at These two are my favorite sites as they never fail to set my head spinning with their takes on why books need to be kept from kids or from their evaluation of the merit of books.

Finally, if you do not know any of the following books, take time this week to read one or more. These are the top 10 challenged books from last year:

1.Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey.
Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group
2.The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie.
Reasons: Offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
3.Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher.
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited for age group
4.Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit
5.And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson.
Reasons: Homosexuality, unsuited for age group
6.The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini.
Reasons: Homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit
7.Looking for Alaska, by John Green.
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group
8.Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
Reasons: Unsuited for age group, violence
9.The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit
10.Beloved, by Toni Morrison
Reasons: Sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence

The only one I have not read is FIFTY SHADES OF GREY (no, I have not been living under a rock; i just do not read many adult books). So, I guess this is the week to sample some of the novel and see what all the uproar is about (JK, I know why this book is banned). Celebrate FREADOM. As Releah Lent said during our radio interview last week, even one banned book is one too many.
Tags: banned books, censorship, freedom to read
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