“If librarianship is the connecting of people to ideas…it is crucial to remember that we must keep and make available, not just good ideas and noble ideas, but bad ideas, silly ideas, and yes, even dangerous or wicked ideas.” — GraceAnne A. DeCandido
One of the core principles of the modern Public Library is to provide access to a universe of historical, scientific, and political thought. A society must have access to a range of perspectives and ideas if it is to think critically about the issues before it. In recent years, books have been under profound attack in the United States. They are disappearing from library shelves, being challenged in droves, and being decreed off-limits by school boards, legislators, and prison authorities.
Let Freedom Read Week celebrates the freedom to read and spotlights current and historical attempts to censor books in libraries and schools. For more than 40 years, the annual event has brought together the entire book community — librarians, teachers, booksellers, publishers, writers, journalists, and readers of all types — in shared support of the freedom to seek and express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular. The books featured during Let Freedom Read Week have all been targeted for removal or restriction in libraries and schools. By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Let Freedom Read Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship.
Below, please find a selection of events highlighting challenged material, as well as a selection of frequently challenged material. We have author events, book tastings, discussions, and more!