Don’t Read This!

Banned Book Week was September 24-October 1. Billed as an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment, the event tends to raise the hackles of librarians and schoolteachers alike.

As part of their curriculum this fall, the students in the education studies course “Taboos and Trends in Literature for Children and Young Adults” have examined and discussed banned reading and created an informative bulletin board about the topic in the lobby of Twilight Hall. Sex, profanity and violence seem to be the topics that stir the most objections, and a newer category of drug abuse—even when it’s about prevention—is causing an uproar as well.

This year’s list, according to the American Library Association (ALA), includes works by both classic and contemporary authors, with many familiar best-selling titles.

Here are just a few of the titles banned, with brief explanations why. (For more, visit

Alexie, Sherman
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian
Because of violence, language, and some sexual content.

Butler, Dori Hillestad
My Mom’s Having a Baby
Because it is inappropriate for children.

Gruen, Sara
Water for Elephants
Because of sexual content.

Collins, Suzanne
The Hunger Games
Because of violence

Huxley, Aldous
Brave New World
Because of sexual content and racism.

Madaras, Lynda, and Dane Saavedra
What’s Happening to My Body? Book for Boys: A Growing-up Guide for Parents & Sons
Because of sexual content.

Morrison, Toni
Song of Solomon
Offensive language and sexual content.

Salinger, J. D.
The Catcher in the Rye
Because of inappropriate language.

Moore, Patrick
Tweaked: A Crystal Meth Memoir
Offensive language and drug use.

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