Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment. Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States. Hundreds of libraries and bookstores around the country draw attention to the problem of censorship by mounting displays of challenged books and hosting a variety of events.
She Is Dallas Info: For more information, please visit the Banned Books Week website. You can also follow Banned Books Week on Facebook and Banned Books Week on Twitter. You might also enjoy the Top 10 Far-Fetched Reasons to Challenge A Book.
Intellectual freedom ”the freedom to access information and express ideas, even if the information and ideas might be considered unorthodox or unpopular ”provides the foundation for Banned Books Week. Banned Books Week stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of unorthodox or unpopular viewpoints for all who wish to read and access them.
The books featured during Banned Books Week have been targets of attempted bannings. Fortunately, while some books were banned or restricted, in a majority of cases the books were not banned, all thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, booksellers, and members of the community to retain the books in the library collections. Imagine how many more books might be challenged ”and possibly banned or restricted ”if librarians, teachers, and booksellers across the country did not use Banned Books Week each year to teach the importance of our First Amendment rights and the power of literature, and to draw attention to the danger that exists when restraints are imposed on the availability of information in a free society.
Since 2000, the American Library Association (ALA) has hosted Read-outs ”a continuous reading of banned and challenged books ”in Chicago, IL. In lieu of a physical Read-Out this year, the ALA along with its fellow cosponsors of Banned Books Week will host a virtual one where readers from around the world will be able to participate.
Videos (no more than two minutes long) can be submitted by anyone as long as the video includes a reading from a banned or challenged book. Alternatively, videos of up to three minutes can be submitted giving eyewitness accounts of local challenges. All videos will be featured on the dedicated Banned Books Week Virtual Read-Out YouTube channel. Any individual who would like to participate in the event can find instructions on the new Banned Books Week website under Virtual Read-Out.
Although most videos will be posted by individuals, libraries are encouraged to film their patrons and upload the videos as part of their Banned Books Week celebration. Instructions on how libraries can participate in the event can be found on the How your library can participate in the Banned Books Week Virtual Read-out! page.
Additional information may be found at the American Booksellers Foundation for Freedom of Expression website.