Banned Books Week: Celebrate Your Freedom to Read!

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Sunday marked the American Library Association’s official kick off to Banned Books Week!  What is Banned Books Week?  Well… I’m glad you asked!

In short, Banned Books Week celebrates the freedom to read, per our First Ammendment right.  How rad is that?!

The long version (in my own words) is this:  People still try to censor what we read.  That whole “burning books” habit from the past?  That still exists, man!  Really!  Whether it be by actually lighting a match or just by limiting access, books continue to be challenged and banned TO THIS DAY.

Hence, Banned Books Week.

Fun fact?  The ALA releases a list each year of the books that have been challenged and/or banned.  They ALSO have a list of Challenged and/or Banned CLASSICS.  #1 on the list is The Great Gatsby.  No joke!

So, why are books banned?  Well, the most common reasons fall into these five categories/reasons (in no particular order):

  1. Sex
  2. Profanity
  3. Racism
  4. Religious
  5. Government/Social

It’s true, folks.  Just check out the reasons these books were banned.  Prepare yourself for an eye roll or two.

But, hey, enough of that.  Let’s get back to the celebration!

On that happy note, look at what we have in the library this week!

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Not a good enough view?  How about this:

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Meet our Banned and/or Challenged CLASSICS crime scene.

It’s a body outline (of yours truly) with dozens of covers of classic books pasted in a glorious collage of anti-censorship awareness.

Enough talk.  Look at some of the titles on the “victim”…

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Recognize any?

We also have some fun propaganda on display!

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I dare you to read this and not get a certain song in your head…

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Ahem.  Anyhow, here are a few more views from our 360 degree display:

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But wait —  there’s even MORE!

If it tickles your fancy you can have a blind date with a banned book.

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We have a WHOLE cart full of books that have been wrapped with paper.  The only information you get is what kind of book it is (fiction, nonfiction, graphic novel, biography, etc.), and a short description of why it was banned.

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If you prefer to know what you’re diving into, check out our list of Banned/Challenged Books here at the Salina Public Library!  After you find one you want to read, just login and place a hold!  (Note:  I’m beginning to compile the list TODAY, so check back often to see what appears!)

Enjoy, and keep celebrating your freedom to read!

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