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Banned Books Week 2021


Graphic: Books unite us. Censorship divides us. ala.org/bbooks

September 26 to October 2 is this year’s Banned Books Week. It’s a great time to celebrate our freedom to read and draw attention to the harms of censorship. This year’s theme is “Books unite us. Censorship divides us.”


I couldn’t agree more. As a retired English teacher and lifelong reader, I love books. I want everyone to be able to love them as much as I do, which means we should be able to find books that speak to us. I don’t have a right to keep someone from reading a book just because it’s not my cup of tea. Intellectual freedom is good for everyone. It opens up opportunities for critical thinking and important conversations. That helps our whole society.


Some of my favorite books are on the list of challenged books, including classics like Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck and To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Are they perfect books? No. Would I recommend that a young person discuss the books after reading them? Yes. But that doesn’t mean they should be banned.


If you’d like to learn more about Banned Books Week and see the Top 10 Challenged Books of 2020, check out https://bannedbooksweek.org/about/.


Then go read a banned book! ;-) #BannedBooksWeek


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