Who Is Challenging Books And Why

These graphs below are based on figures are pulled from the American Library Associations “Challenge Database”, which currently has 10,676 book challenges on record. A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group. An actual banning is the removal of those materials. Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting the access of others. Due to the commitment of librarians, teachers, parents, students and other concerned citizens, most challenges are unsuccessful and most materials are retained in the school curriculum or library collection.

You will notice that if you add up the numbers of challenges by reason or initiator, the total will be greater than 10,676. This is because many challenges have multiple reasons or initiators.

Challenges By Year

Challenges By Year

Challenges By Reason

Challenges By Reason
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Top 10 Most Banned Books: 2009

Banned books week is here again. Every year, there are hundreds of attempts to remove books from schools and libraries. Celebrate your freedom to read and right to choose your book during Banned Books Week, September 25th to October 2nd. For more information visit the American Library Association.

Last year during banned books week I posted the top 10 most challenged books for each year spanning 2001 to 2008. Below you is the most recently updated list of the top ten most banned books for 2009:

2009

  1. ttyl; ttfn; l8r, g8r (series), by Lauren Myracle
    Reasons: drugs, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  2. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson
    Reasons: homosexuality
  3. The Perks of Being A Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
    Reasons: anti-family, drugs, homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited to age group
  4. To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
    Reasons: offensive language, racism, unsuited to age group
  5. Twilight (series) by Stephenie Meyer
    Reasons: religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  6. Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  7. My Sister’s Keeper, by Jodi Picoult
    Reasons: homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
  8. The Earth, My Butt, and Other Big, Round Things, by Carolyn Mackler
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  9. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
    Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group
  10. The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier
    Reasons: nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group