Washoe County Libraries news release:
Libraries throughout the nation will observe “Banned Books Week: Celebrating the Freedom to Read” from September 26 – October 3. Each year, librarians, booksellers, teachers and countless others take this opportunity to highlight the importance of intellectual freedom and remind everyone not to take this precious democratic freedom for granted. Washoe County libraries will have banned book displays during Banned Books Week.
Observed since 1982, BBW celebrates the freedom to choose or the freedom to express one’s opinion — even if that opinion might be considered unorthodox or unpopular. It stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of those viewpoints to all who wish to read them. After all, intellectual freedom can exist only where the freedom to express oneself and the freedom to choose what opinions and viewpoints to consume are both met.
Each year, the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom receives hundreds of reports on books and other materials that were “challenged” or requested to be removed from school or library shelves. The reasons vary, including sexual explicitness, racism, offensive language, homosexuality, religious viewpoint and violence. Here’s a list of the top 10 frequently challenged books for 2008. For more information on book challenges and censorship, please visit www.ala.org/bbooks.
1. And Tango Makes Three, by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
2. His Dark Materials trilogy, by Philip Pullman
3. TTYL; TTFN; L8R, G8R (series), by Lauren Myracle
4. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
5. Bless Me, Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
6. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
7. Gossip Girl (series), by Cecily von Ziegesar
8. Uncle Bobby’s Wedding, by Sarah S. Brannen
9. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini
10. Flashcards of My Life, by Charise Mericle Harper