Banned Books Week, September 25 – October 1, 2016, is an annual celebration of the freedom to read. Since 1982, librarians, booksellers, teachers and countless others take this opportunity to highlight the importance of intellectual freedom and remind us not to take this precious democratic freedom for granted.
Banned Books Week also highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States.
Banned Books Week is sponsored by the American Booksellers Association;American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression; the American Library Association; American Society of Journalists and Authors; Association of American Publishers; and the National Association of College Stores. It is endorsed by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. In 2011, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund; National Coalition Against Censorship; National Council of Teachers of English; and PEN American Center also signed on as sponsors.
Here are ten surprising books that have been banned or challenged over the years. How many have you read?
- The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, 1884
- The Call of the Wild, Jack London, 1903
- The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger, 1951
- Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury, 1953
- For Whom the Bell Tolls, Ernest Hemingway, 1940
- The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald, 1925
- The Jungle, Upton Sinclair, 1906
- The Red Badge of Courage, Stephen Crane, 1895
- The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne, 1850
- To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee, 1960
For more information, please visit the ALA.
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