Thanks to The Happy Feminist and CUUMBAYA for poitning out Banned Book week. The group behind Banned Books Week is the ALA – although it more accuratley should be called “Challenged Books Week” “Banned Books Week” rolls off the tounge easier.
Down here in the Atlanta Metro area, more specifically Gwinnett County, a lady (no doubt supported by some group) wanted to get rid of the Harry Potter books in school libraries because of the referenced to witchcraft and wizardry. I’m sure every kid who reads Harry Potter grows up to be a wiccian. If a kid changed his religion because of Harry Potter, yes I’d be worried about the kid but I wouldn’t blame the books for it – I’d blame whatever religion the kid used to be that caused him to see hope and more answers in Harry Potter than their religion.
There are some interesting tidbits on that ALA website – like this, the most often occuring reasons for Challenges:
Between 1990 and 2000, of the 6,364 challenges reported to or recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom (see The 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books):
- 1,607 were challenges to “sexually explicit” material (up 161 since 1999);
- 1,427 to material considered to use “offensive language”; (up 165 since 1999)
- 1,256 to material considered “unsuited to age group”; (up 89 since 1999)
- 842 to material with an “occult theme or promoting the occult or Satanism,”; (up 69 since 1999)
- 737 to material considered to be “violent”; (up 107 since 1999)
- 515 to material with a homosexual theme or “promoting homosexuality,” (up 18 since 1999) and
- 419 to material “promoting a religious viewpoint.” (up 22 since 1999)
Other reasons for challenges included “nudity” (317 challenges, up 20 since 1999), “racism” (267 challenges, up 22 since 1999), “sex education” (224 challenges, up 7 since 1999), and “anti-family” (202 challenges, up 9 since 1999).
419 challenges for “promoting a religious view point.” So, how much do you want to bet that books promoting Christianity weren’t challenge much but it was books “promoting” other religions.
I was also looked at the lists of most popular books banend or challenged. One of my faviorte books, Flowers for Algernon, has been challenged more than the Anarchist’s Cookbook. I’ve read a lot of them, but I’ve still have some literary subversion to go! I