AWRW Presents: Banned Books Week, Celebrate your F-READ-om to Read!

Closing books closes mind. Celebrate your f-read-om to read this week, (September 21-27, 2014), by reading a banned book!

Books are banned for all sorts of absurd reasons, including offensive language, sexually explicit material, violence, occult and or satanic themes, religious viewpoints, and being considered “anti-family”.

Notable banned books include:

1.) The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, 1884 

It was called, “trash and suitable only for the slums,” because of racially sensitive themes. It was first banned in Concord, MA in 1885.

My grandfather owned this book, possibly an original copy, and I remember reading it when I was very young. The racially oppressive language never bothered me, mostly because I didn’t know what it meant.

2.) The Call of the Wild, Jack London, 1903

This “man and his dog story” is often read by adolescents, and because of the audience it attracts, isn’t considered “age appropriate” due to its dark tone and bloody violence.

My father owned this book, possibly still does, and I can remember reading this book pre-adolescence.

3.) The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger, 1951

Frequently challenged and removed from classrooms and school libraries. It was considered “unacceptable,” “obscene,” “blasphemous,” “negative,” “foul,” and “filthy.”

This book was a required read at my high school. It bored me to tears… honestly! One I could have lived without reading. Why, oh why couldn’t it have banned from my school?!?!?! 😉

4.) Go Ask Alice, Beatrice Sparks, 1971

Due to frequent mentions of drug use, sex, extreme profanity, and teen pregnancy, this book has been challenged since the day it was published, and is still controversial to this day!

One of my favorite books, I hold it near and dear to my heart, and if I had a teenage daughter I would have NO problem with her taking a gander at it. I read it when I was 12 or 13.

5.) Forever, Judy Blume, 1975

This book has strong themes of teen sexuality, making it a target of frequent censorship, specifically from pro-abstinence and religious groups who do not like the fact that the protagonist of the story is a teenage girl “on the pill”.

Adapted for television, this book was part of our sex-ed in my school. I’m pretty close to positive I read the novel, also, as I was a big fan of Judy Blume growing up.

 What is your take on banned books? Do you think it is harmful, or for the betterment of society? Please leave you thoughts below. I’m curious as to what you think! 🙂

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7 thoughts on “AWRW Presents: Banned Books Week, Celebrate your F-READ-om to Read!

  1. I agree with Teagan! I am amazed that Judy Bloom was ever thought of being banned. I haven’t read Go Ask Alice…I’ll have to go for it. I’ve read the rest on this list. Banning a book is just ridiculous. If a person is intelligent enough to read they can make up their own minds about a book. Telling a person not to read something, is much more likely to make them want to read it…..oh my what is all the hype about? I’ve started a few banned books simply because they were banned and I wanted to make a statement but they were so bad, I just couldn’t finish them. Aren’t we intelligent enough to make up our own minds about a book?
    If you are a parent. Read the book. If you think your child is too young to understand it, either help them with it, or have them wait to read it. If the book is controversial, discuss it with your child. Banning a book? You are just making your child rebel.

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  2. Reblogged this on Living Incurably and commented:
    My local library has a display up this month with all the books they have that were at one time banned. I think they know that advertising this will draw patrons over to see what’s controversial and/or naughty, and without realizing it, they’ll be reading a book instead of just renting a DVD or using the free Wi-Fi. Those librarians, always scheming…

    Here’s an informative post by April Wood, over at the blog, “A Well Read Woman” explaining Banned Books Week and giving some interesting examples.

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  3. I remember reading Lady Chatterley’s Lover and skipping the alternate chapters which were indescribably boring to get to the sexy chapters. If it had never been a banned book I wouldn’t have heard of it and probably would never have read it. Have to admit I’ve never heard of Go Ask Alice.

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