Thursday, October 1, 2009

"There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all." --Oscar Wilde, 1891

It's Banned Books Week again. Banning books--restricting access to knowledge, ideas, and imagination, in other words--is one of the worst things I can imagine. It is a political act--and one we can easily overlook. "It's only a book." But in banning books, we attempt to shape minds to our way of thinking by getting rid of other potential modes of doing so. It is oppression at its most insidious.

I'm posting the American Library Association's list of the 100 most challenged books from 1990-1999. (The stats from this decade are still being complied.) I've bolded the ones I've read (or started to read). If you'd like to spread awareness you might consider doing the same on your own blog/journal/MySpace/Facebook/whatever.

Scary Stories (Series), by Alvin Schwartz
Daddy’s Roommate
, by Michael Willhoite
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
, by Maya Angelou
The Chocolate War
, by Robert Cormier
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
, by Mark Twain
Of Mice and Men
, by John Steinbeck
r, by Judy Blume
Bridge to Terabithia
, by Katherine Paterson
Heather Has Two Mommies
, by Leslea Newman
The Catcher in the Rye
, by J.D. Salinger
The Giver
, by Lois Lowry
My Brother Sam is Dead
, by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier
It’s Perfectly Normal
, by Robie Harris
(Series), by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
(Series), by R.L. Stine
A Day No Pigs Would Die
, by Robert Newton Peck
The Color Purple
, by Alice Walker
, by Madonna
Earth’s Children
(Series), by Jean M. Auel
The Great Gilly Hopkins
, by Katherine Paterson
In the Night Kitchen
, by Maurice Sendak
The Witches
, by Roald Dahl
A Wrinkle in Time
, by Madeleine L’Engle
The New Joy of Gay Sex
, by Charles Silverstein
Go Ask Alice
, by Anonymous
The Goats
, by Brock Cole
The Stupids
(Series), by Harry Allard
Anastasia Krupnik
(Series), by Lois Lowry
Final Exit
, by Derek Humphry
, by Judy Blume
Halloween ABC
, by Eve Merriam
Julie of the Wolves
, by Jean Craighead George
Kaffir Boy
, by Mark Mathabane
The Bluest Eye
, by Toni Morrison
What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Girls: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Daughters
, by Lynda Madaras
Fallen Angels
, by Walter Dean Myers
The Handmaid’s Tale
, by Margaret Atwood
The Outsiders
, by S.E. Hinton
The Pigman
, by Paul Zindel
To Kill a Mockingbird
, by Harper Lee
We All Fall Down
, by Robert Cormier
, by Judy Blume
Flowers for Algernon
, by Daniel Keyes
Annie on my Mind
, by Nancy Garden
, by Toni Morrison
The Boy Who Lost His Face
, by Louis Sachar
Cross Your Fingers, Spit in Your Hat
, by Alvin Schwartz
Harry Potter (Series)
, by J.K. Rowling
, by Stephen King
James and the Giant Peach
, by Roald Dahl
A Light in the Attic
, by Shel Silverstein
Ordinary People
, by Judith Guest
American Psycho
, by Bret Easton Ellis
Brave New World
, by Aldous Huxley
Sleeping Beauty Trilogy
, by A.N. Roquelaure (Anne Rice)
Bumps in the Night
, by Harry Allard
Asking About Sex and Growing Up
, by Joanna Cole
What’s Happening to my Body? Book for Boys: A Growing-Up Guide for Parents & Sons
, by Lynda Madaras
The Anarchist Cookbook
, by William Powell
Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret
, by Judy Blume
Boys and Sex
, by Wardell Pomeroy
Crazy Lady
, by Jane Conly
Athletic Shorts
, by Chris Crutcher
Killing Mr. Griffin
, by Lois Duncan
, by Robert Cormier
Guess What?
, by Mem Fox
, by Kurt Vonnegut
Lord of the Flies
, by William Golding
Native Son
by Richard Wright
Women on Top: How Real Life Has Changed Women’s Fantasies
, by Nancy Friday
Curses, Hexes and Spells
, by Daniel Cohen
On My Honor
, by Marion Dane Bauer
The House of Spirits
, by Isabel Allende
, by A.M. Homes
Arizona Kid
, by Ron Koertge
Family Secrets
, by Norma Klein
Mommy Laid An Egg
, by Babette Cole
Bless Me, Ultima
, by Rudolfo A. Anaya
Where Did I Come From?
, by Peter Mayle
The Face on the Milk Carton
, by Caroline Cooney
, by Stephen King
The Dead Zone
, by Stephen King
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
, by Mark Twain
Song of Solomon
, by Toni Morrison
Always Running
, by Luis Rodriguez
Private Parts
, by Howard Stern
Where’s Waldo?
, by Martin Hanford
Summer of My German Soldier
, by Bette Greene
Tiger Eyes
, by Judy Blume
Little Black Sambo
, by Helen Bannerman
Pillars of the Earth
, by Ken Follett
Running Loose
, by Chris Crutcher
Sex Education
, by Jenny Davis
, by Steven Gould
, by Stephen King
The Drowning of Stephen Jones
, by Bette Greene
That Was Then, This is Now
, by S.E. Hinton
Girls and Sex
, by Wardell Pomeroy
The Wish Giver
, by Bill Brittain
Jump Ship to Freedom, by James Lincoln Collier and Christopher Collier

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