Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Banned Books Presentation this Friday!

Mr. Wally Seiler of Alliance, a member of the Intellectual Freedom Section of the Nebraska Library Association, will present a Banned Books Program at noon in the Alliance Learning Center Community Rooms.

In 2007 the Office of Intellectual Freedom (OIF) reported 420 attempts to remove books from public or school libraries with sixty-one percent of the complains being made by parents, fifteen percent by library patrons and 9 percent by administrators. Though more than one request per day has been reported to the OIF, it is believed that only one out of every four or five complaints is documented.

A wide variety of books has been challenged throughout the years and includes popular and historical authors such as Stephen King, Dr. Seuss, Dean Koontz and Shakespeare. Examples include The Lorax by Dr. Seuss, challenged for criminalizing the forest industry; Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder, challenged and banned for racist statements against Native Americans; and The Color Purple by Alice Walker, challenged for sexuality and racism. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, a book frequently found in High School curriculum, has been challenged or banned in over 53 districts for reasons such as racism and profanity.
Challenges on books are not simply an expression or point of view. They are, in fact, an attempt to remove books from the public use and restrict access for others. Censorship denies our freedom as individuals to choose and think for ourselves. Being able to make the personal decision of what book to read is firmly rooted in The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Celebrate your freedom to read and learn more about banned books and the Office of Intellectual Freedom during Wally Seiler’s Banned Books presentation, sponsored by the Alliance Public Library Foundation and the Nebraska Library Association.

A light desert will be provided. Please bring an hors d'oeuvre to share.

No comments: