Censorship is still a huge issue in our world. Censorship of sex, language, culture, diversity – you name it, at some point in time, someone has tried to censor it. It’s to bring awareness to and fight against the banning of books that I’m participating in the Banned/Challenged Books Reading Challenge 2017, hosted by Book Dragon’s Lair!
The books that the world calls immoral are the books that show the world its own shame.
– Oscar Wilde, author of the much censored and maligned The Picture of Dorian Gray
Some awesome posts about banned books and censorship from Banned Books Week back in September:
- 11 Quotes from Authors about Censorship and Banned Books, from Buzzfeed
- The Right To Read, by Yours Truly 😉
- What the List of Banned Books Says About Our Society’s Fears, from Time Magazine
Here’s the information on the challenge from the host! Are you participating? Have you read many banned books in the past? I’m aiming for the Uncontrolled Fire level!
Basics: Read books that have been banned or challenged. Or you could read non-fiction books about censorship and/or banning books.
Details: There are different type of fires and stages within those fires so that’s what I’m using for levels.
Reviews would be amazing, even if it’s just telling someone about the book you read. Or if you’re like me and most don’t want to hear about another book, just write something up on GoodReads or LibraryThing. Or, you know, write a review for your blog 😉 Either way, I’ll have a linky set up for your thoughts. Not sure if it will be monthly, quarterly, or yearly.
Checking the books out of the library shows them that these books matter and they should continue to buy banned/challenged books for the library. Buying the books shows the publishers that they’re worth publishing and tells the author thanks. Whichever way to do it, just read.
- Read 1 book. You are an Ember. You’re small but mighty just waiting to burn the structure down.
- Read 2-6 books. You are Creeping. You’re burning with a low flame and spreading slowly.
- Read 7-12 books. You are a Blow-up fire. Sudden increase in fire intensity strong enough to upset control plans
- Read 13+ books. You are Uncontrolled. Any fire which threatens to destroy life, property, or natural resources.
Why: Censorship has been going on for a long time and it is alive and well in this day and age. I believe in watching what my children read (when they’re young) but I’m not going to tell you what your child can read and I’m not going to allow you to tell me what my child can read.
It has been reported that parents will ask to have a book taken off their child’s classroom reading list when they haven’t even read the book!
Where do I find out if a book has been banned: The American Library Association has lists. Lots of lists. I’m sure other countries do as well but I haven’t looked them up yet. The ala does has a Banned Books Week every year so we’ll do a read-a-thon in September at the same time.
What is the difference between banned and challenged? A simplified answer: A book must be challenged before it can be banned. A challenged book goes through the process but it left on the shelves or in the classroom. A banned book is removed. The American Library Association (ala.org) has Top Ten list per year of the report they receive. Most of the children’s books challenged are because they are “unsuited for age group”. I personally feel they make the parent uncomfortable.