Durango Public Library celebrates Forbidden Books Week – the Durango Herald
“We are always talking about celebrating the freedom to read,” says acting director
The Durango Public Library joins the American Library Association this week in celebrating Forbidden Books Week.
“It celebrates everyone’s reading freedom and everyone’s ability to find what they’re looking for on the shelf,” said Durango Public Library Acting Director Colleen Galvin.
Forbidden Book Week was launched 39 years ago in response to a wave of challenges for books in schools, bookstores, and libraries in the late 1980s.
“Book bans grew because of people saying things like ‘This book is offensive to me’, or what I find even more insidious is that people say that certain books are not suitable for children. and move them to the adult section, ”Galvin said. .
Organized every year during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information.
“We’re always talking about celebrating the freedom to read,” said Galvin.
The library has set up a display on its main floor that showcases the censored books from the ALA list, and more. A second teenage display featuring censored books is also set up on the library’s ground floor, as Galvin said teenage books often experience the most censorship.
Galvin said his current favorite ALA group book is “The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas.
“It’s an amazing look at urban family life and the challenges teens face based on their zip code,” said Galvin.
ALA’s theme for Forbidden Book Week this year is Censorship Dividers Us, Books Unleash Us.
“We respect your ability to find a book that’s right for you, but we don’t respect the ability that you can censor something for someone else,” Galvin said.
As a librarian, Galvin spoke about the need for access that libraries provide to the community.
“We really want you to find what you’re looking for at the public library,” said Galvin. “We don’t act like local parents, we respect your right to find what you are looking for, regardless of your age.”
Ten books that the American Library Association is highlighting this year as being subject to censorship in:
- “George” by Alex Gino. Contested, prohibited and restricted for LGBTQIA + content, in conflict with a religious point of view and not reflecting “the values of our community”.
- “Stamped: Racism, Anti-Racism and You” by Ibram X. Kendi and Jason Reynolds. Banned and contested due to the author’s public statements and allegations, the book contains “incidents of selective storytelling” and does not encompass racism against everyone.
- “All American Boys” by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely. Banned and contested for blasphemy, drug use and alcoholism and because it was believed to promote anti-police views, contain divisive matters and be “too sensitive a subject right now”.
- “Speaks” of Laurie Halse Anderson. Banned, challenged and restricted because it was supposed to contain a political point of view, it was claimed to be biased against male students and to include rape and blasphemy.
- “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian” by Sherman Alexie. Banned and disputed for profanity, sexual references and allegations of sexual misconduct by the perpetrator.
- “Something Happened in Our Town: A Child’s Story of Racial Injustice” by Marianne Celano, Marietta Collins and Ann Hazzard, illustrated by Jennifer Zivoin. Blamed for “divisive language” and because it was supposed to promote anti-police views.
- “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee. Banned and contested for racial slurs and its negative effect on students, featuring a “white savior” character and his perception of the black experience.
- “Of Mice and Men” by John Steinbeck. Banned and contested for racial slurs and racist stereotypes and a negative effect on students.
- “The bluest eye” by Toni Morrison. Banned and contested because it was viewed as sexually explicit and portrayed child sexual abuse.
- “The Hate You Give” by Angie Thomas. Blasphemy, and because he was supposed to promote an anti-police message.