September Recommended Reading: Banned Books!

Recommended Reading: Banned Books! Banned Books Week 2007

Each year during the last week of September, the American Library Association celebrates “Banned Books Week”, honoring our precious democratic freedom to read whatever we want. September 29–October 6, 2007 will be the 26th anniversary of this event. According to the ALA’s Banned Books Week website: “BBW celebrates the freedom to choose or the freedom to express one’s opinion even if that opinion might be considered unorthodox or unpopular and stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of those unorthodox or unpopular viewpoints to all who wish to read them.”

While all of the books and other media on this list were challenged by various organizations and individuals, people concerned with intellectual freedom were able to uphold and maintain public access to most of them. (Most of them were challenged for being “unsuitable for children”—this is generally an excuse for restricting teenage exploration.) For more detailed information, please visit the website of the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom

The Washington Library Association’s Intellectual Freedom Interest Group also has many links on this topic.

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Twain, Mark 813.4 T969a 1984

Adventures of Tom Sawyer Twain, Mark 813.4 T969ad 1938

As I Lay Dying Faulkner, William 813.52 F263a 1987

Beloved Morrison, Toni 813.54 M882b 1988

The Bluest Eye Morrison, Toni 813.54 M882b 1994

Brave New World Huxley, Aldous 823.912 H986b 1998

Bridge to Terabithia Paterson, Katherine 813.54 P296b 1977

Canterbury Tales Chaucer, Geoffrey 821.1 C496c 1956

Catch 22 Heller, Joseph 813.54 H477c 1961

Catcher in the Rye Salinger, J.D. 813.54 S165c 2001

Chocolate War Cormier, Robert 813.54 C811c 1974 New Readers

Clan of the Cave Bear Auel, Jean 813.54 A917c 1980

Clockwork Orange Burgess, Anthony 823.914 B955c 1968

Close Range [includes Brokeback Mountain] Proulx, Annie 813.54 P968c 2003

The Color Purple Walker, Alice 813.54 W177c 2003

Death of a Salesman Miller, Arthur 812 M647d 1999

Fahrenheit 451 Bradbury, Ray 813.54 B798f 1993

Girl, interrupted Kaysen, Susanna 616.890092 K23g 1994

Giver Lowry, Lois 813.54 L921g 1993 New Readers

GLBTQ : the survival guide for queer & questioning teens Huegel, Kelly 306.766 H887g 2003 PSEC

Grapes of Wrath Steinbeck, John 813.52 S819g 1992

Grendel Gardner, John 813 G227g

Handmaid’s Tale Atwood, Margaret 813.54 A887h 1998

Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets Rowling, J.K. 823.914 R884h 1999

Harry Potter & the Goblet of Fire Rowling, J.K. 823.914 R884h 2000

Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix Rowling, J.K. 823.914 R884h 2003

Harry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban Rowling, J.K. 823.914 R884ha 1999

Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone Rowling, J.K. 823.914 R884h 1998

Heather Has Two Mommies Newman, Leslea 306.85 N553h

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Angelou, Maya 813.54 A584i 1969

James and the Giant Peach Dahl, Roald 823.912 D131j 1996

Julie of the Wolves George, Jean Craighead 813.54 G348j 1986

Leaves of Grass Whitman, Walt 811.3 W615L 1965

Lolita Nabokov, Vladimir 813.54 N117L 1982

Lord of the Flies Golding, William 823.915 G619L

Merchant of Venice Shakespeare, William 822.33 P3 1965

Native Son Wright, Richard 813.52 W952n 1940

Of Mice and Men Steinbeck, John 813.52 S819o 1937

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest Kesey, Ken 813.54 K42o 1964

One Hundred Years of Solitude García Márquez, Gabriel 863 G216o

Ordinary People Guest, Judith 813.54 G936o 1977

Portnoy’s Complaint Roth, Philip 813.54 R845p 1994

Separate Peace Knowles, John 813.54 K73s 1959

Slaughterhouse-Five Vonnegut, Kurt 813 V947s

Time to Kill Grisham, John 813.54 G869t

To Kill a Mockingbird Lee, Harper 813.54 L478t 1960

Valley of the Horses Auel, Jean 813.54 A917v 1982

Wrinkle in Time L’Engle, Madeleine 813 L566w New Readers



A clockwork orange [videorecording] Media Collection 791.4372 C643 2001

The color purple [videorecording] Media Collection 791.4372 C7194 1997

The grapes of wrath [videorecording] Media Collection 791.4372 G766 2004

Of mice and men [videorecording] Media Collection 791.4372 O31 2005

Ordinary people [videorecording] Media Collection 791.4372 O65 1991

Portnoy’s complaint [videorecording] Media Collection 791.4372 P853 1989

To kill a mockingbird [videorecording] Media Collection 791.4372 T6274 1998



Filed under Recommended Reading/Viewing

6 responses to “September Recommended Reading: Banned Books!

  1. What a wonderful way to celebrate your–our!–freedom to read!

  2. Kevin Delecki

    This is excellent! Kudos to you all for getting the word out in such a well done way!

  3. Kellie Fernandez

    Our freedoms indeed need to be celebrated and discussed as we face new legal sanctions with Homeland Security and national defense against terrorism.

  4. Jonathan

    Here’s an interesting commentary from the Palm Beach Post:
    “What the book challengers overlook is that any child who is reading is not the kind of child who is likely to be hurt by a book. It’s children who don’t read who can be damaged by all kinds of sinister outside influences.”

  5. Elizabeth - Eugene Oregon

    Huzzah for Banned Books! Without the work of those closed-minded bigots, I wouldn’t have a summer reading list!

    “…They say there are strangers who threaten us
    In our immigrants and infidels
    They say there is strangeness too dangerous
    In our theaters and bookstore shelves
    That those who know what’s best for us
    Must rise and save us from ourselves

    Quick to judge
    Quick to anger
    Slow to understand
    Ignorance and prejudice
    And fear walk hand in hand…”

    – Neil Peart

  6. I feel far more folks will need to read this, extremely great info.

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