Did you know that today is the start of Banned Books Week? From September 24-30, bibliophiles, teachers, librarians, publishers, journalists, and all readers will celebrate the freedom to read and shed light on the freedom of expression (for all; even those who challenge the books) as well as the harms of censorship. Throughout the week, I wanted to shed light on books that have been challenged or banned from libraries and schools. “Challenged” means that there has been an effort to remove or restrict these books from readers. After some research, I found that a lot of the books on these lists were books that I have read and owned, thanks to advocacy organizations, teachers, librarians, and other community members who oppose censorship.
Here is the first installment of the most challenged/banned books (in no particular order).
- “Of Mice and Men” by John Steinbeck
- “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou
- “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain
- “Beloved” by Toni Morrison
- “Catch-22” by Joseph Heller
- “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury
- “Gone With the Wind” by Margaret Mitchell
- “Harry Potter” (series) by J.K. Rowling
- “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald
- “Moby Dick” by Herman Melville
- “Leaves of Grass” by Walt Whitman
- “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee
- “Where the Wild Things Are” by Maurice Sendak
- “Forever” by Judy Blume
- “His Dark Materials” series by Phillip Pullman
- “The Giver” by Lois Lowry
- “Bridge to Terabithia” by Katherine Paterson
- “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky
- “Junie B. Jones“ series by Barbara Park
- “Goosebumps” (series), by R.L. Stine
Which titles jump out at you? What are your thoughts on censorship? Share in the comments!