READERS! Banned Books Week 2010 is from September 25-October 2! And I want to do something fun and interactive!
Anytime this month, send me a photo of YOU reading a BANNED BOOK that I can post here on my blog. In the email include an address, and I will send you a set of two banned books buttons. They look like this:
I am super psyched about this project! Tell your friends! Tell your foes! Let’s get our read on! Send your pics to e.kristin.andersonATgmailDOTcom. (Don’t forget to replace AT with @ and DOT with .)
Here are some of the first few readers to show me their SCANDALOUS love for literature:
Personally, I loved TWISTED when I read it last year! In Montgomery County, Kentucky TWISTED was one of several novels “withdrawn from classroom use” after parents complained about the language as well of the content of the books. The parents also believed that the books didn’t belong in college prep classes, as they weren’t intellectually stimulating enough.
One of the great things about TWISTED is that it’s such a great book for guys, especially guys who think they don’t like to read. We’ve gotta keep it on classroom shelves!
This is one of my favorites, even though it was assigned reading and, as I’ve mentioned here before, I loathed assigned reading in high school. But the violence in the book — committed by children upon fellow children — is often deemed “too much” by parents and concerned citizens. LORD OF THE FLIES is no stranger to censorship, as it is the 8th most challenged “classic” according to the ALA.
Sure, it’s violent. It’s scary. It’s gonna make your guts turn inside out. But it’s classic! It’s exciting! And, let’s face it, if you miss out on reading this book, you miss out on jillions of pop culture references, including an episode of The Simpsons. And, you know, all those jokes your college buddies will make about ass-mar and the conch.
And here’s teacher and young adult author Elissa Janine Hoole and her kids “Jabber” and “Monkey” (left) reading NAKED LUNCH by William S. Burroughs, JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH by Roald Dahl and THE LIGHT IN THE ATTIC by Shel Silverstein. All classics, these books have been challenged a lot of the years.
THE NAKED LUNCH is often challenged for obscene language and content, and was involved in some serious court cases back in the 60′s, the last of which, in 1966, set a precedent for many future legal battles involving censorship. JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH has been banned for language (use of the word “ass,” in particular), as well as references to snuff, tobacco, and whiskey. THE LIGHT IN THE ATTIC has been challenged and banned for poems that are dark in theme, supposedly encourage bad behavior and reference the occult.
BTW, you want to keep an eye on Elissa. Her debut novel KISS THE MORNING STAR is coming out from Marshall Cavendish Children’s in 2012! She blogs at Notes from a Knew-It-All.
So there you have it! Three readers have already sent in their pics, all reading some fabbity fab banned books! Are you reading a banned book this month? Do you want to? I bet you already have banned books in your house. There are great resources at the ALA Banned Books Week page, but the ABFFE site also has a great list of past challenges and bans.
Want more information on Banned Books Week? Check out the ALA’s resource page here!