Go out and read this! Banned Books edition

Happy Banned Books Week, Chronic readers!

Yes, there is such a thing.

Every year, the American Library Association teams up with the Office for Intellectual Freedom to provide the public with a list of books that are frequently “challenged,” whatever that means.

Then, of course, they encourage the public to go out and read said “challenged” material in an effort to raise awareness of, and combat, intellectual censorship.

As I happen to be a big fan of access to information, I’m going to go ahead and perpetuate the reading of so-called “banned” material by posting the most current list. This way, we can all feel a little bit radical and delinquent together (because, really, has anyone not read the Hunger Games? Do we get a double dose of delinquency if we’ve seen the movies too?).

Without further ado, the List for 2013 (this year’s data is still being collected):

Out of 307 challenges as reported by the Office for Intellectual Freedom.

Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group, violence

The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

Fifty Shades of Grey, by E.L. James
Reasons: Nudity, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins
Reasons: Religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group

A Bad Boy Can Be Good for A Girl, by Tanya Lee Stone
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit

Looking for Alaska, by John Green
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, homosexuality, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

Bless Me Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
Reasons: Occult/Satanism, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit

Bone (series), by Jeff Smith
Reasons: Political viewpoint, racism, violence

Have you read any of these, Chronics? Do you find them “ban-able”?

You can see previous years’ lists at: http://www.ala.org/bbooks/frequentlychallengedbooks/top10#2013

Some Classic Banned Books include the following:

  1. The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  2. The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
  3. The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
  5. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
  6. Ulysses, by James Joyce
  7. Beloved, by Toni Morrison
  8. The Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
  9. 1984, by George Orwell
  10. Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck

This co-incidentally was also my high school English class required reading list.

Do you have a favorite Banned Book?

My favorite Banned Book is actually a series- the Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor. This wonderful series is filled to the brim with thematic elements such as growing up, dating, family and friend relationships, and living in a Maryland suburb. I highly recommend it.

Have fun reading, Chronic friends, and don’t forget to leave a comment here or on my Facebook page letting me know what you think!


3 thoughts on “Go out and read this! Banned Books edition

  1. Louise says:

    If only they would ban 50 Shades…. ugh, it’s just an awfully written book and turns a serious topic into something that supposedly ‘titillates’ prim and proper middle class married ladies. UGH.

    Also, I don’t know what Captain Underpants is, but from the title alone I’m dying to find out! 😀

    • iamchronicallywell says:

      Agreed, Louise. If only books were banned based on their grammatical errors- sigh. Captain Underpants is a sort of graphic novel for children about a superhero whose costume is mainly just a pair of underwear and a cape. There is a LOT of toilet humor in it, and that apparently makes it worth banning? How it’s worse than 50 Shades or the Hunger Games is lost on me though!

  2. Breanne says:

    I just started Looking for Alaska yesterday. I didn’t know much of what it was about or that was on the banned books list, but I guess I picked a nice time to read it. 😉

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