Banned Books Week

September 19th, 2014

Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the right to read and the value of free and open access to literature and information. This event shines a light on efforts to restrict access to materials and to counter those efforts buy showcasing banned or challenged books.

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Graphic novels from Open Book

This year College Library is highlighting its collection of graphic novels for Banned Books Week. Many of the titles in the collection have faced challenges from across the nation. A challenge refers to an attempt to remove or restrict access to materials by an individual or group. The titles showcased may have been targeted due to concerns over adult content, language, sex, nudity, or for not being age appropriate. While many challenges to comics held in libraries may have been issued out of genuine concern, College Library remains committed to ensuring access to controversial materials. We concur with the American Library Association’s decision to promote the freedom to choose and the freedom to express one’s opinions (even if that opinion might be considered unorthodox or unpopular) and stress the importance of ensuring the availability of those viewpoints to all who wish to read them.

As a result, College library is prominently displaying a number of banned or challenged graphic novels including Jeff Smith’s Bone, Allison Bechdel’s Fun Home, and Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis along with additional titles from the Open Book Collection. Stop in and browse the display or suggest a title to purchase. In addition to graphic novels in Open Book and other collections within College Library, several campus libraries, particularly the LGBTQ Campus Center library and Memorial Library feature graphic novels in their collections.  We encourage students to also explore these resources.

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Posters celebrating the freedom to read

Find more information on Banned Books Week on the ALA’s site and at bannedbooksweek.org.

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