Tag Archives: Banned Books

Banned Books Week

27 Sep

Phew. One day left.

I missed it last year but this year, I got in just under the wire. You remember that scene in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom?

Yeah. Banned Books Week = hat.

So here’s my favorite of all favorite banned books: The Catcher in the Rye which has been banned about a bajillion times.

What makes [Catcher in the Rye] especially interesting,” the BBC observed in 2003, “is that it has been banned in many countries at one time or another and still remains on the banned list in areas of the USA. As well as containing ‘vulgar and obscene language’, drunkenness, prostitution, delinquency and references to sex it has also been accused of being: ‘anti-white’ (1963 – Columbus, Ohio), being part of a ‘communist plot to gain a foothold in schools’ (1978 – Issaquah, Washington). . . .

-Daniel Jack Chasen, “Why J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye still provokes book bans”

And look what I found:

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Nice, huh? That’s from the 5 Criminal Mugshots of Characters from Banned Books which you can see here.

So here are some favorites and why they were banned:

1. Autobiography of Malcom X – “how-to-manual” for crime and “anti-white statements”

2. Call of the Wild – “too radical”

3. For Whom The Bell Tolls – “spreading propaganda unfavorable to the state”

4.  Grapes of Wrath – profanity (goddamn) and “spreading propaganda”

5. Great Gatsby – “sex”

6. Howl – “homosexual sex”

7. Invisible Man – “marxism”

8.  To Kill A Mockingbird – “promoted white supremacy.”

9. Our Bodies Ourselves – “promotes homosexuality” and the use of the word “vagina” (I kid you not)

10. In the Night Kitchen – “baby boy’s penis.” (again, not kidding)

Penises and Vaginas. They’ll get you banned every time.

Happy Banned Books. It’s always fun to see how ignorant we can be!

Thus Ends Banned Books Week and Thus Begins Halloween Time

6 Oct

So I COMPLETELY missed Banned Books week. I don’t know how that happened. I was going to post something each day – talk about books that I love that had been banned. It was gonna be great.

Instead, I did nothing. Figures, huh? In my defense it was a rough week. And now here we are at the end of Banned Books and I’ve said nothing. Since I don’t want it pass unnoticed, I’ll say this: Read Banned Books. Celebrate the freedom to read. Some of my best friends are Banned Books.

Here’s a list of the top banned books in 2011. The vast majority of them are YA which just goes to show you that people who ban books have no recollection of what being a teenager was really like. Nice to see To Kill a Mockingbird still on there, for “racism” of all things.

  1. ttyl; ttfn; l8r, g8r (series), by Lauren Myracle
    Reasons: offensive language; religious viewpoint; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
  2. The Color of Earth (series), by Kim Dong Hwa
    Reasons: nudity; sex education; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
  3. The Hunger Games trilogy, by Suzanne Collins
    Reasons: anti-ethnic; anti-family; insensitivity; offensive language; occult/satanic; violence
  4. My Mom’s Having A Baby! A Kid’s Month-by-Month Guide to Pregnancy, by Dori Hillestad Butler
    Reasons: nudity; sex education; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
  5. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons: offensive language; racism; religious viewpoint; sexually explicit; unsuited to age group
  6. Alice (series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
    Reasons: nudity; offensive language; religious viewpoint
  7. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
    Reasons: insensitivity; nudity; racism; religious viewpoint; sexually explicit
  8. What My Mother Doesn’t Know, by Sonya Sones
    Reasons: nudity; offensive language; sexually explicit
  9. Gossip Girl (series), by Cecily Von Ziegesar
    Reasons: drugs; offensive language; sexually explicit
  10. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
    Reasons: offensive language; racism

Egads! Who are these people who ban books you ask? And terrifyingly enough the answer is anyone who thinks a book is offensive and wants to challenge it. According to the American Library Association parents are the most common source point for challenged books. Way to encourage reading, parents! The good news is that though anyone can challenge a book actually getting it banned is not as easy.

So now that I’ve missed Banned Books week let’s move onto Halloween Times which for me, will begin this evening at my house with saucy, noodle-y, cheesy goodness for dinner and then Rocky Horror Picture Show to kick off the Halloween season. Cross your fingers and hope my husband remembers to bring home a pumpkin.

Let’s do the Time Warp Again!

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