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Banned Books Week  

Learn about ALA's Banned Books week
Last Updated: Dec 2, 2013 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates
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 What is a Banned Book?

A banned book is one that has been removed from a library, bookstore, or school collection solely because it is considered to contain controversial content.

Sometimes banned books have even been burned or otherwise forcibly destroyed.  

Banning or challenging a book is considered to be serious matter, because blatant censorship of that type is a violation of our freedom to read.

Feeedom To Read Foundation

Freedom to Read

  • Freedom To Read Foundation
    The Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) is a non-profit legal and educational organization affiliated with the American Library Association. FTRF protects and defends the First Amendment to the Constitution and supports the right of libraries to collect - and individuals to access - information.

Office of Intellectual Freedom

  • ALA's Office of Intellectual Freedom
    Established December 1, 1967, the Office for Intellectual Freedom is charged with implementing ALA policies concerning the concept of intellectual freedom as embodied in the Library Bill of Rights, the Association’s basic policy on free access to libraries and library materials.

Banned Books Week

The American Library Association has designated September 22 - 28, 2013  as “Banned Books Week”.

Banned Books Week (BBW) is an annual event of the American Library Association. It celebrates the freedom to read that is protected under the First Amendment, while also bringing awareness and attention to the dangers of censorship by highlighting actual or attempted book bannings that have occurred across the United States, both now and in the past.

Banned Books Week BannerBanned Books Week Banner by DML East Branch

  • ALA Banned Books Week
    Visit this link to learn more about ALA's Banned Books Week
  • ALA Timeline: 30 Years of Liberating Literature
    Snce 1982, Banned Books Week has inspired librarians, booksellers, authors, publishers, teachers, and readers to celebrate and defend the freedom to read. To commemorate 30 years of Banned Books Week ALA has unveiled this timeline of significant banned and challenged books.

  • Banned Books
    Videos, virtual read-out, events and more

Most Challenged Books

ALA's List of  Top Ten Most Frequently Challenged Books of 2012 

  1. Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey.
  2. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie.
  3. Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher.
  4. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James.
  5. And Tango Makes Three, by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson.
  6. The Kite Runner, by Khaled Hosseini.
  7. Looking for Alaska, by John Green.
  8. Scary Stories (series), by Alvin Schwartz
  9. The Glass Castle, by Jeanette Walls
  10. Beloved, by Toni Morrison


*A challenge is defined as a formal, written complaint filed with a library or school requesting that a book or other material be restricted or removed because of its content or appropriateness.


    100 Banned Books

     The 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1900-2000


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      Have You Read a "Banned Book"?

      Have you ever read a "Banned Book"?  Do you have one that you want to give a shout-out to? Post a comment if you''d like!

      Banned and Challenged Classics


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