To Kill a Mockingbird To Kill a Mockingbird question

Banned books
Tracy Tracy Mar 03, 2013 10:37PM
I have a question for everyone here in my friends list. I am doing a paper/presentation on banned books. Here is a portion of my paper on trends:

Trends noticed: Often, the challenges are not approved by the authorities. But when they are, they are usually for the following ten reasons: Anti-family, drugs, nudity, occult/satanic, offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence, and religious viewpoint. Book challenges are decreasing each year, less than 400 in 2010. Occasionally there are more challenges in one year, usually this can be traced to specific books release dates: Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games. From what I discovered, the most oft used challenge to a challenge is loss of First Amendment rights. It is pretty rare for a book to actually be banned, it is more often put on ‘permission slip only’ status, moved to a ‘more appropriate age’ section, or put on a locked shelf in the adult section.

My questions you are these: Have you read any of the banned books on ALA's list of top 100 banned books? Did you read them because you were required or because you chose to? When you hear of a book being banned, do you choose to read that book? What are your thoughts regarding the reason these books are challenged and/or banned? Do you have any books you think should be banned and why?

Thanks everyone!

Before I retired I was a middle school librarian in the city schools. Every September I made up copies of the banned list to give away to teachers and students. Also, I made a display of all the banned books that our library contained and encouraged the students to check them out.
I also talked to the students about the various reasons books were banned. One version of Little Red Riding Hood mentioned Red taking wine to Grandma's house--challenged! My Friend Flicka was challenged because the author referred to a female dog as a bitch, which is the technical term for a female dog.
Shel Silverstein's poetry books, especially Where the Sidewalks End, has been challenged because of some of his drawings offended some people and also for some of the subject matter. These books are some of my favorite poetry books and students love them too. I do not see why they would be challenged. Goosebumps as a series is banned in some places; I've read many of them and see nothing wrong with them. They're only mildly scary. Many of the titles that are on the list should not be. Some people are so narrow-minded that they would object to almost anything. Let's not forget the Harry Potter series--these books were the first books for children to be listed on the adult New York Times 10 best list. Authors who didn't make the list called themselves being "Pottered." These books had more children reading than ever before, not including the adults. There may be some books that should be put on an older reading list but not banned or challenged. Right-leaning people seem to be the major group who object to books, many of whom don't even read the books before objecting to them. READ BANNED BOOKS!

Leslie (last edited Mar 06, 2013 07:17PM ) Mar 04, 2013 06:05PM   1 vote
Interestingly, though I have read many of these books, my children (aged 10 and 14) have read a lot of them as well. Between the whole family, we're probably at about 75% on this list. Junie B. Jones? Really? Are the bad grammar police at work here or is it like when they used to ban Harriet the Spy for being too disrespectful to her elders?

I do try to make sure my kids aren't reading anything that will give them nightmares, but I have never asked them not to read a book. If I see them reading something 'difficult,' as when my then 12 year old was reading "Night," I try to read with them to be ready for a discussion.

There was no porn on that list, so I assume that is not part of this discussion.

I really don't believe in banning any type of book anywhere. (With the exception of child pornography.)
I don't even believe we should ban the Bible or other religious works in schools (as long as they are taught as works of literature or fiction). Love to see your conclusions.

PS- and to see Farenheit 451 on the list! Yes, that is one of the deepest ironies I have ever encountered.

By the seem of the link provided by the OP, the list is the most challenged books of the last decade, rather than those actually banned. Unfortunately there is a trend developing that is quite disappointing with regards to such challenges. Banning books was once the preserve of the right wing/religious fundamentals, however there has lately been an increase in liberals seeking to ban books - Tom Sawyer for example was part of a campaign because of the character N***er Tom, which a lot of liberals felt was unacceptable. However, it must be acknowledged that the language of a novel is that of its time. A book should neither be banned for offending against liberal sensitivity any more than against that of the right wing. It's a sad indictment of a culture.

I've read a lot of the banned books on the list; not knowing that they were banned. Quite a few were required reading material in school and from those I found others to read, enjoy and wonder about.
I don't believe that books should be banned; they open doors to new ideas, thoughts, questions. They give us different view points to try on, try out, keep or discard. We learn whether or not we want to learn; books open doorways that lead into rooms; that lead to new understandings or enhanced perceptions.

Perhaps because they make you think, and in a different way to the way that the people who want to ban them think?

Kevin (last edited Mar 05, 2013 07:54AM ) Mar 05, 2013 07:43AM   0 votes
I'm not sure what you mean by 'banned'. Does this mean they can't be bought in a bookshop? Or is it to do with schools banning them?
I was thinking maybe it's a US thing. I live in England and I'm not aware of any list of banned books here.
Personally I think it would be great if all the books I don't like were banned, then when I go into a bookshop (there are still a few around)I wouldn't have to waste too much time browsing as it would be full of my kind of books.
Just a thought.

I've read quite a few of them.
Harry Potter (chose to)
The Perks of Being a Wallflower (chose to)
The Color Purple (was recommended for an essay - gr 12 English)
To Kill a Mockingbird (required - gr 10 English)
The Giver (required - gr 7 English, later chose to re-read it, now reading the whole series)
Bridge to Terabithia (required - gr 6 English)
The Lovely Bones (required - gr 10 English)
A Wrinkle in Time (required - gr 6 English)

I was born and raised in Canada, which may have had an impact on the books allowed in the curriculum. Also, up until the end of Grade 10, I attended Catholic schools, so it's interesting to see how open-minded the school board must have been, in terms of book choices.

I've never actually heard of a book being banned, so this list shocked me, but if I did, I would definitely look into it to see what it's about, and from there, I would see if I was interested in reading it or not. So I guess that hearing about a book being banned, for me, would almost be a good advertising mechanism.

I disagree with many of the reasons that these books were banned. For example, the Harry Potter series being banned in many religious schools because it was against the beliefs of that religion. I find it a bit over-the-top considering we couldn't read it or watch the movies in my school, and that was one of the only books I was interested in at the time. One could argue about hypocrisy if they're showing something they don't believe in, but get real, these kids are going to read the books and watch the movies anyway. Many Catholics understand that this book/movie isn't trying to convert people to witchcraft/wizardry and it's for mere entertainment purposes. Therefore I don't think it would hypocritical for a school to read Harry Potter or watch the movie on a rainy day.

Wow, I have read 59 of those books, some when I was very young , some in school and some early. I think it is for the most part a great list of books. It appears they simply are banned for one of the reasons you mentioned and really many more dealing with religious ideas than i thought, seconded with racism and sexual propriety. I would definitely not suggest many books to a 8 year old, but I think almost all are worth reading at some time in our lives. I do not understand at all though why certain books are banned, like a John Grisham novel. Just kind of laughed at that.

I'm honestly scared when I see the words 'banned books'. Every time in history that books were banned it was always for the wrong reasons and with horrible consequences.

It's almost absurd that we can have free access to any information online, but educators still insist on having a 'banned list'....

Anyways, interesting article, did you know that the longest banned book in history was Ovid's Art of Love? Shame he wasn't born this day and age, he'd give 50 Shades of Grey a good run for its money.

I've read quite a few of the books on the list, but not because they were banned. I read them because I discovered them on my own, or because some were required for a class.
Nowadays, as a parent, I have asked a teacher to not require my children be exposed to certain readings. Some teachers refused, which was one more reason why we left regular public school for other options. I do not expect to ban a book from everyone else's reading, but I was very troubled by the idea that all kids were expected to take the same exposure in the same cardboard cut out way. When I started hearing about banned books week, i looked it up and most of my research pointed to parents who were not interested in schools undermining their parental goals with their children. There were also some odd cases of people burning books, which I thought only helped create that 'forbidden fruit' mentality. Over all, I find Banned Books Week a bit misleading in its own way, kind of the flipside of the hysteria of burning books.
I have read some of those books as a parent and asked my children to not read them. Sometimes I ask them to wait a few years. I don't see the point of somehow causing a large scale ban of a book- it would be unconscienable (sp?), but I also expect that there not be blanket expectations that everyone in a class must always read the same things. At the same time, I find that a whole group of writing from the last couple decades really is extraordinarily irresponsible when it comes to what they expose children to.
I don't think there are books that should be banned- but I also make sure that my children don't have to read them. The kids do get curious about a book once in awhile, and we'll discuss it. I can't think of any I 'struck off the list', so to speak, that they were attracted to as 'forbidden fruit'. I never set this situation up so that my kids were attracted to disobeying me. They obey because I have proven trustworthy, and when they are curious about something, we discuss it. Our situation is not perfect, but it has worked beautifully.

Lora It's excellent that you had the chocie to read Harry Potter despite the classroom not reading it. My arguments tend to follow the line a different way ...more
May 12, 2013 12:06PM
Somerandom I see where you're coming from. But I too will have to side with Peter. Parebtal guidence is great but shielding a child from a book helps no one. Kid ...more
May 12, 2013 09:08PM

I've read 6 or 7 books on the list. Some I read because it was required in school, others because they were on a list I could choose from in school, and 1 or 2 on my own outside of school. I recognize quite a few of them being required/optional books for other classes though. There are also quite a few on there that weren't written yet when I was in school. I tend not to look at lists like this just because it makes no difference to me if they're there or not.

My general thoughts are that it's just parents attempting to limit access to books they don't want their kids to read. Which I don't really have a problem with. I don't like the Junie B Jones books (which are on that list) and do what I can so my kids don't read them, but there are several reasons for that. I don't think they're age appropriate for them and while they're developing their reading and language skills they can cause some confusion. I think what these lists do is just take it further in that they're not only trying to dictate what their kids read, they're trying to dictate what EVERYONES kids read.

I read a lot of books from this list. And I enjoyed them all. And no, I don't think any of this books should be banned, because they are important. They have a message (like Harry Potter! The importance of friendship and loyalty. That you need to fight for the right thing. That you and your opinion matter!) and stories that need to be told (like the knight runner and to kill a mockingbird. The subjects of this stories are still an issue!) Or the books written by Judy Blume. They help so many girls and young women to figure out life.

Me, personally, a lot of books helped. Sharpend my mind, made me think and re-think my opinions, how I handle life and the people around me. Made me take a look out of my comfort zone. Books shouldn't be banned. Never.

deleted member Mar 03, 2013 10:45PM   0 votes
I read the Harry Potter series.I chose to read it.I never knew it was banned.

The concept of banning books is so outdated to me.What are they afraid of? Children can see and hear about violence everyday on TV and video games but Heaven forbid they should read a book!! Who should have the right to claim they know better than everyone else what they should be reading, shades of Fahrenheit 451. I think it is plain ignorance that make people afraid of a book.

I've read a lot of these "banned" books and enjoyed every single one of them because they are quality books! The idea that any organization "bans" a book is ridiculous in this country! I didn't realize that some of these were banned and am opposed to any kind of ban on books. It's up to parents to monitor what children read and see on TV, not an organization or even teachers.

In response to your questions, I have read several of the books on this list (at least 27 books or series listed from 2000-2009). It is a mix of books assigned while in school, i.e., Of Mice and Men, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Cather in the Rye, To Kill A Mockingbird (one of my favorite books and movies), Black Boy, etc., and books that I read for pleasure or before I allowed my children to read them, i.e., Harry Potter series, His Dark Materials series, The Color Purple, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, A Time to Kill, Captain Underpants series, anything by Toni Morrison, etc. Let me not forget to include the books that I read as a child or in school for pleasure and recommend to my children, for example everything by Judy Blume, The Bridge to Terabithia, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Goosebumps, etc.

I am absolutely aghast by this list and plan to share it with friends and family. I knew that some of the books were on the list but have not seen this list since I was in college in the late 80s. Now, I feel like I need to read all the books on this most recent list and plan to do just that. I may even start a "Banned Books Bookclub" so that we can read them all!

No book should be banned! Books are the light into other worlds, a window that shows new perspectives, a road that leads to new understandings and appreciation for what is unfamiliar and often misunderstood. It is offensive to me that in 2013 we continue to ban books because it makes us uncomfortable. This world could stand for more discomfort. Amazingly, many of the subject matter that your research indicates is the reason for banning a book is all described in detail in religious literature. So if God was willing to discuss these topics, why can't others?

We get to choose what we read, but we should never restrict or ban a book from someone else reading, learning, enjoying, experiencing. It is closed minded to ban books and serves no purpose but to control what others think.

I applaud your research and studies and look forward to learning more when you share your findings.

I also have a question: What does it mean realistically for a book to be banned or challenged? Does it just make it harder to get it? Is it not available at certain book stores? For example, the Harry Potter series is #1 on this list but available in all Barnes and Noble stores and on ebook, as are many other books on this list. What are the real-life ramifications of a banned book?

Annisa (last edited Mar 04, 2013 01:19AM ) Mar 04, 2013 01:09AM   0 votes
I want to read Catcher in the Rye because I am a fan of Chloe series (written by McClintock) and the protagonist said several good classic books are To Kill a Mockingbird ant Catcher in the Rye. When I told people that I had difficult time to find that book on bookstore, that was when I knew it was one of banned books. I still want to read it now - simply because I really enjoy To Kill a Mockingbird. I am curious if Catcher in the Rye is good as Chloe (or McClintock) said.

I have read: Harry Potter (series), by J.K. Rowling, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain, The Color Purple, by Alice Walker, To Kill A Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, My Brother Sam Is Dead, by James Lincoln Collier, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, by Ken Kesey, A Time to Kill, by John Grisham, The Lovely Bones, by Alice Sebold, A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeline L’Engle. and Julie of the Wolves, by Jean Craighead George. I have never read a book because it was banned. I simply read them because I heard that they were good books. When I was in middle school several female students chose to read Forever by Judy Blume because it was banned. I cannot understand people wanting to ban books. Personally, I think the Shades of Grey books are trash, so I don’t read them. Several of my friends loved that series. I think the world would be a better place without books like that, but I would never even consider trying to inflict my beliefs on others by banning something. Is banning really about controlling others?

I've honestly read just a few of them. Some were required. Others, I chose.
We had a discussion in English class about this though. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland was almost banned in school libraries because the animals are put on the same level as humans. Tarzan was banned because Tarzan and Jane had a child out of wedlock. My teacher even said that Webster's Dictionary was banned because it was considered a porno or something.
I think the banning of books is quite stupid. If a child doesn't want to read the book, they shouldn't have to. But others might so why ban it?

For some reason my virus protection software doesn't want me on that site. I'm going to assume that the list is similar to the one I used to wear on my tee shirt. I wore it on "twins day" at the school where I taught, and the librarian wore one also, hence, "twins".

The shirt was sold by a small lefty cooperative, Syracuse, which doesn't carry the shirt anymore. *sigh!* But the reason I wanted to wear the shirt TO SCHOOL was because I had an entire class set of The Chocolate War, by Robert Cormier, yanked from my classroom by administration when an irate, conservative parent turned it into a great big goddamn deal and I found myself parked in the principal's office with him, my principal, the district's lang. arts chair, and a couple of other hoo-haws and mucky-mucks. The parent had objected to the passage in which a young man imagines what it must be like to feel a girl's breast. Of course, in real life, no adolescent boy should do such a thing. If he does, he sure as hell shouldn't regard himself as normal! I OWNED the book set, but it was taken anyway and replaced with a book of my choice that was APPROVED. Since there was no "approved" list (thank goodness, although for a brief while they invented it, just because of me most likely), I was able to get a set of Laurence Yep's Dragon's Gate, which is also excellent and has no controversial passages.

I was dept. chair at the time and found myself in the office in an earlier year, not by demand but because I had mentored a friend and colleague and given her my list of project books. Students were allowed to choose any title from about forty books on this list, and a young lady from a strict, conservative-Christian household had chosen The Color Purple, a Pulitzer winner with a lot of sexual language and sexual abuse, probably to yank her parents' chain. I felt that since I had given the newbie MY list and she was now in trouble, I'd better get my butt in there and face the dragons.

The district's dept. chair had approved The Chocolate War verbally, but when the chocolate hit the fan, so to speak, she denied everything. She also told us both never to use a written list, the inference being that if we just had a big shelf full of books and the kid checked it out, we could say we hadn't asked her to read it. This is not a type of politics I enjoyed, and so I wore the banned book tee on "twins" day to legally protest their actions. (The students, of course, could not hear a word of it, because then I would be deemed "unprofessional". The lesson I took away was to always get permission for anything that might be a hot potato later, in writing. After that,I sent a lot of "confirmation" e-mails!

The librarian who was my twin had dealt with this a lot, too, and that is more dangerous, because books in her entire collection were being challenged. Thus far nothing had ever been pulled because of parental or staff(!) wrath. She & her fellow librarians were determined to keep it that way. She had been challenged about The Color Purple, as well as some books having to do with facts about street drugs, and the tiny, pitiful, dated sampling of military weaponry that was in the darkest shadows of the stacks. A teacher had taken a book AWAY from a student, brought it to the library, tossed it down angrily on the counter and asked, "WHAT is this doing in the school library, anyway?" The librarian fumed a bit and politely told her that it was informational, and some students choose to go into the military later, may be thinking about it now, but that the book couldn't hurt anyone. Happily, it went no further.

Congrats on taking on this particular subject. Book lovers have a hard time understanding how words can be banned, it's not in our DNA. We want to read what we want, when we want. Books should be never be banned because they make someone uncomfortable. Actually, if someone's voice makes someone uncomfortable, we should probably listen to what they have to say. Suddenly what has been banned becomes almost required reading. Best of luck on your paper.

Yes, I have read a few from the list. The 'forbidden fruit'still holds its charm and if I come to know that a particular book has been banned, I would want to read it and form an opinion on it myself. To Kill a Mocking Bird is one of the finest American Classics I have read and I see no reason for it to be banned. And the same goes for a number of other books as well. Literature, as an art transcends all boundaries and fetters. There is something to be learnt from every book. To actually be 'influenced' by the 'controversial' ideas presented in the book solely depends on the reader. Banning books may, to a certain extent exercise an effective control on the spread of an ideology, but to kill it right from the roots is impossible.

I have read many of the banned books. Even in college. Some I chose to read because i was curious about why it was banned when it has been used in education for so long. Others I read for class mainly college. I look for banned books and get them when I can. at Half Priced book in Kansas City they have Banned book month and have amny on display for purchase. No, I believe all book can be used as a tool in educating, we can learn from the book on actions to take and not to take. Books are part of our history, dreams, inspirations, and the creative side to what we cannot be or what we can achieve, and they also bring creativity to life.

I have read a lot of the books on the banned list. such as I know Why The Caged Bird sings, Huckleberry Finn, Of mice And Men, to Kill a Mockingbird,Harry Potter, and many more, No PTA type group is going to tell me what i can read. those groups are a bunch of trouble makers anyway.

I've read only 2 of the books on the list and was very surprised by many that were on it. None were required reading in school, both by choice. I could only assume racism would be the issue in my read books. Both excellent books by the way. One has earned a permanent spot on my shelf.

I have read many of the books on the banned book list. Some were assigned and some I just came across. In the United States, "banned" is very local, like within a school because the second amendment makes it clear that literature cannot be censored by the federal government. The last banned book in the US was un-banned in the 1960s.

My mother was a high school librarian. When parents sought to challenge Slaughterhouse 5 she pointed out that many of these "children" who were too young to read the book would be eligible for the draft within a year.

People challenge books because they are scared of what someone else might learn, like to think for themselves.

Somerandom (last edited Mar 11, 2013 09:50PM ) Mar 11, 2013 09:46PM   0 votes
I don't see why these books were banned in the first place. All of them are great or otherwise harmless.

In year 7 our teacher would read a chapter or two from either Scary Stories or Captain Underpants as a treat (if we were good.)
I've read alot of the books on that list. Some were required reading material for school or I read for funsies. I have even watched the movie/Tv show adaptions for alot of them. Again, either for school or cos I wanted to. Lol! I feel like a rebel now.

What about the Bible?

I've read several on the list, some good, some not so good, but none that should be publicly banned. No book should be. I'll decide what books should be banned from my reading list.

I have read quite a few of the books on this list. I must say that I giggled when I read that Goosebumps was on it as I remember reading the series at school but the fact is, I have no notion or recollection of what they were about so they didn't make that much of an impression. A lot of these I have heard preached against, I was brought up in a devout christian household - Bridge to Tibertha, Harry Potter and so on were all critcised heavily. I found then that a lot of these books have been banned not on the basis of decency but due to the Church, which is something I am against a great deal.

I've read 8 on this list and I think only one was for school (The Handmaid's Tale-college class). Some of them I don't get why they would be banned. I think parents should be the ones who GUIDE

I think it's interesting how Harry Potter is on # 1. Is it because of the many topics the author put in there? Or because of how religions raged against witchcraft in the series? Which is only a portion of the topics that this book series covers. I would've expected to see His Dark Materials on # 1 but then again, it's high up enough in the ranking.

Back to topic:
Yes, I read some of these books. I don't have kids and unfortunately I didn't read much when I was a teen. Well, at least that saved me from reading a lot of crap that is popular with teens (like Eragon - wow, that's probably one of the crappiest fantasy series there is).

PS I used My Brother Sam is Dead when I taught gifted fifth graders, and nobody said anything. It surprises me to hear that this title is up for grabs. Catcher In the Rye is a perennial hot-button book, even though its content, by contemporary standards, is nothing. People hear the title and think, "sex!". I sure didn't see it, but I knew better than to assign it!

well according to the list, i have 7 banned books that i have read. A few of them have been pushed upon me by my teacher, such as To kill A mocking Bird, Farenhit 451 and Bridge to Terabithia. Now i don't understand how these books can be banned, they are yes very openly viewed about the whole situations, but why do they always insist on saying that a girl dies (Bridge TT) lets bann it because some kids might get upset with it. There are so many upsetting books out there that are worse than these books. For example, autobiographies (Hope Solo, i'm reading right now, or Cherie Currie [Singer of the 1970's band The Runaways]) These books are so much more depressing because they are real, but because they are real their fine to expoilt to anyone who wishes? Books shouldn't be banned in schools, or banned period for that matter. Books are how some people learn and how some people live thier lives, find adventure in them while sitting in a 5 foot cubical with a 9 to 5 job

deleted member Mar 13, 2013 01:54PM   0 votes
Books should not be banned!

Great discussion...but I feel I have to clarify, especially for those outside the US and others who may misunderstand.

The books on the list are not banned from bookstores, or stopped from publication. Yes, we have freedom of speech and the press. A book is banned, if the challenge is successful, only from a certain school or small community library, or from required class curriculum. For example, Huck Finn is full of the N-word and has been challenged repeatedly for use in classrooms for fear of offending. I get that. But I also teach it to American Lit classes. I am careful to point out the author's intent, to show what was considered ok at the time, and also to show the development of Huck's moral character over the course of the book. I think that perhaps those who challenge such a book for such a reason may not have read it carefully and misunderstand the author's intent.

However, let us not imply that a banned book is permanently removed from all circulation forever. Not all books are appropriate for all readers. If I discovered that my child was being required to read extremist hate literature in a class, I would like to have the right to stop that. As a public high school teacher, I have chosen to teach many of the books on the list, and welcome discussion with any parent who may feel uncomfortable. But I also believe it works both ways. The parents should have the right to confront a school if they believe their children are being taught unacceptable ideas.

As noted above, Huckleberry Finn is banned by some school districts due to its use of the n-word, although there is a new edition that replaces that word with "slave."

Many of the books, such as Catcher in the Rye, are banned because they include curse words.

His Dark Materials is probably banned because it may be viewed as containing blasphemous, anti-church, material.

I have no idea why anyone would object to To Kill a Mockingbird. Perhaps because it portrays racists in a negative light? :-)

I am currently in High School, and one thing that has stuck with me is when the student teacher said, "The banned books are always the best". And I believe he is correct. Yes, some unbanned books are fabulous, but the banned or challenged books have depth to them. My reccomendation, and the student teachers; Read banned books!

Tracy wrote: "I have a question for everyone here in my friends list. I am doing a paper/presentation on banned books. Here is a portion of my paper on trends:

Trends noticed: Often, the challenges are not a..."

I've read many of the books on this list. But in particular, I think Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse-Five" has been on the banned since before I was a wee lass in the 80's. I wonder if he is amused by this in his grave at this point? Its ridiculous and honoring at this point for this book to remain the book they want to burn. It's even mentioned in the 80's cult classic "Footloose" by Bacon's character who loves to go against the book burning town's rules.

Banning books is seriously disturbing in this day and age. However, those of us with free will just find a copy and read it to spite the list makers.

Dorit (last edited Apr 23, 2013 07:50AM ) Apr 23, 2013 07:22AM   0 votes
I've read quite a few of the books on that list. Some of them were required reading when I was in school and some I chose to read. Some of these books are my favorites and I reread them on occasion.
I don't feel books should be banned. Controversial books should be discussed.
It's disturbing to me that there are people, even parents, who want to exert so much control over others that they don't want them to be exposed to ideas and values outside of their own.
Admittedly, my family has a history of reading banned books. My father read books banned in Nazi Germany. Gee, if the Nazis banned books what does that say about book banners today? When I see a book has been banned I want to read it. When I knew of children's books that were banned I made them available to my daughter to read.
Maybe we should ban book banners.

I have read quite a few of these books, enjoyed a great many of them, have found some of them life/attitude changing, and absolutely cringe at the thought of book banning. Why is there such fear of ideas? Exploring ideas is a portal to more fully understanding ourselves and our world. This fear, and this need to control others, continues to amaze and alarm me.

i've read quite a few of them - its distressing to see in this day and age that Judy Blume, who wrote some of the best young-girl Coming of Age type books is still featured on the list; as well as so many classics

I don't typically pick them because they are banned but i'm never surprised to see certain books on the list

I've read about 20% of the books on the list not knowing that they were banned. Imagine banning Fahrenheit 451 LOL. I wonder why?

I've read about half or more of that list. Many were part of the English reading in my junior high or high school classes! Many of them are classics. Now, as a parent, if the school doesn't require some of those books for reading, i will, as i think some teach a great deal.

My Brother Sam Is Dead
I was very surprised to find the above book on the list? Does anyone know the reason?

“Have you read any of the banned books on ALA's list of top 100 banned books?”
I have read 12 books from this list, so far, but many of the books on there are on my to-read list.

“Did you read them because you were required or because you chose to?”
Because I chose to.

“When you hear of a book being banned, do you choose to read that book?”
Well, that depends what the book is about. If it interests me, then I’ll read it, no matter if it’s banned or not. If it sounds like crap, then I won’t.

“What are your thoughts regarding the reason these books are challenged and/or banned?”
I think most books are banned for really stupid reasons. Take the Harry Potter series for example. There is nothing “bad” or “harmful” about these books. Or the “Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark” Series by Alvin Schwartz. They were challenged and/or banned because the pictures were too scary?! That’s just crazy. There are also some books on that list that I think are very important and should be read by everyone, for example “Fahrenheit 451” or “Brave New World”.

“Do you have any books you think should be banned and why?”
I don’t think any books should be banned, except those that degrade a certain race or something like that, like “Mein Kampf” by Hitler.

When you ban a book, you are increasing the chances of more persons desiring to read it. (well if there are other like me) How can someone ban To Kill a Mockingbird?

I just had a look at the list and didn't realize some of the books I had read were banned. I've read just over a dozen on the list, and didn't read any of them because they were banned/challenged. I know the whole forbidden fruit argument is what draws many people to read these books, but I don't think it makes much difference to me. I'm not aware of there being much in the way challenges and/or bans in Australia, which may be a reason why a call to ban does not mean a call to read for me. I'm sure they happen but I think on a more micro level (i.e. in particular school libraries or by individual churches). However, my mum (in her 60s) remembers the scandal of Lady Chatterley's Lover and calls to ban it, and she said once people heard why the ban was called for (sex, sex, sex) she and her friends were desperate to read it to see what the fuss was. Perhaps the reason for the ban is relevant. If it seems somehow thrilling or 'naughty' maybe that's the attraction. When I hear a book is banned because it contains racist language, and then I look at the content and/or the time it was written, I immediately place it in its context and will read it or not based on if the storyline appeals. Why place current attitudes on books from the past?

Side note: the idea that Fahrenheit 451 was banned strikes me as incredibly ironic given the wonderful warning it carries for societies that remove literature. Banning of books as a method of gaining totalitarian control - oh no, no parallels to be concerned with there.

Good luck with your studies.

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