Tyler Celebrates Banned Books This Week
Sometimes books like "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn," "The Catcher in the Rye," and "To Kill a Mockingbird" are banned from curriculums and school libraries because of challenges made by parents or administrators. Those books and others are being celebrated this week in Tyler.
The Tyler Public Library will join thousands of libraries and bookstores across the country in sponsoring Banned Books Week today through Saturday, September 28. The aim is to celebrate the right to access books without censorship.
Every year, the American Library Association urges support for Banned Books Week to keep access to books open and unrestricted, and the Tyler Public Library is supporting that cause. They'll offer pages to color, information, and displays this week in Tyler, plus they'll host a photo competition with the East Texas Camera Club to celebrate Banned Books Week. You'll be able to vote for your favorite photo on the Library’s Bulletin Board.
The ALA says these were among the most challenged books in 2018:
George by Alex Gino
Reasons: banned, challenged, and relocated because it was believed to encourage children to clear browser history and change their bodies using hormones, and for mentioning “dirty magazines,” describing male anatomy, “creating confusion,” and including a transgender character
Captain Underpants series written and illustrated by Dav Pilkey
Reasons: series was challenged because it was perceived as encouraging disruptive behavior, while Captain Underpants and the Sensational Saga of Sir Stinks-A-Lot was challenged for including a same-sex couple
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Reasons: banned and challenged because it was deemed “anti-cop,” and for profanity, drug use, and sexual references
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
Reasons: banned and challenged for sexual references, profanity, violence, gambling, and underage drinking, and for its religious viewpoint
The ALA also says most challenges are unsuccessful. Supporting Banned Books Week means you want to give everyone the right to choose whether to read a book or not, rather than restrict the choices.
For ways to participate in Banned Books Week, check out the Tyler Public Library's Facebook page. And maybe chat with your co-workers about all of the banned and challenged books you've read in your lifetimes. If they made all of these books into movies, would they still be challenged?