Banning books is a form of censorship. To ban or remove a book from circulation, whether it be in a school or a library, is to ban the spreading of ideas. It is to stifle speech, change, and innovation in equal measure. Books are meant to be read, and their contents and ideas are meant to be discussed amongst everyone. As such this is why every September since 1982, libraries across the United States celebrate Banned Books Week, an entire week of advocacy highlighting these attempts at censorship and the damage it does to our society.
In honor of this year's Banned Books Week, we librarians at Heterick Memorial Library would like to shine a spotlight on some of the books that have faced threats of censorship. This list is only a small sample, and a more extensive list of titles can be found on the American Library Association (ALA) website. Each book featured below is available for checkout from Heterick Memorial Library.
As mentioned at the beginning of this list, these titles make up only a small portion of books being banned across the country, and the full list is almost assured to grow every year. But it's important to remember that while all books will face some form of opposition based on their content, we can still fight to defend them. Whether by advocating for the freedom to publish our ideas in print or online, or just by reading and discussing these books with others, we can further ensure that the ideas in these books are not banned from society.