You Can’t Read That!

You Can’t Read That! is a periodic post featuring news about banned and challenged books.

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Yes, Virginia, They Still Ban Books in Tucson, Arizona.

The American Library Association, which recently concluded its annual Banned Books Week campaign, is sometimes accused of banning books that right-wing and religious groups would like to see placed in libraries. This particular accusation has to do with a religious tract opposing homosexuality. Personally, I’m not at all sure religious tracts count as “books,” although perhaps if they were submitted as fiction the ALA might reconsider.

Librarian burns books to make a point during Banned Books Week; patrons are horrified.

Terrific slide show and editorial about the books banned in Texas public schools over the past year.

I know, Banned Books Week is over, but here’s Bill Moyers anyway, better late than never:

When we think of banned and challenged books, we sometimes forget to include the comics and graphic novels that upset people too.

Clever infographic on the ALA’S top ten banned & challenged books of 2011.

“I have come to terms with the fact that you can’t win every book challenge and have it remain on the shelves, but I’d like to imagine that any decision made to remove a book is community approved.”  An interesting and contrarian post about Banned Books Week from an angry librarian.

Texas parents say library’s children’s books too sexual.

uncle bobby's weddingIn Missouri, a parent says a library’s children’s book is too gay. The book is Uncle Bobby’s Wedding. Here’s the description from Amazon:

“Bobby and Jamie are getting married, but Bobby’s niece Chloe is worried that she won’t be his favorite person anymore. Will Uncle Bobby still think she is special? Sarah Brannen’s warm story is set in an alternative family as Uncle Bobby marries his boyfriend. Uncle Bobby’s Wedding embraces Bobby’s relationship with Jamie, but keeps its focus where it truly belongs: on an uncle and niece’s love for each other. Beautifully told and charmingly illustrated, this simple yet moving story begs to be read time and again.”

You know, just looking at the cover, I can see where the religious right gets some of its “homosexual agenda” paranoia. I mean, really? Gay hamsters in tuxedos?

Banned book author Pat Conroy makes the case that book-banners are idiots.

Remember when Amazon had a copyright problem with Orwell’s works and “disappeared” Kindle readers’ copies of 1984 and Animal Farm? Here’s a current case where electronic publishers have disappeared an author’s book after he was shown to be a plagiarist, although not (so far, anyway) going into users’ devices and deleting already-purchased ebooks.

Censorship in the Americas: Google Brazil Chief Just Released From Custody.

Journalists for censorship. Lot of that going around lately.

Revenge censorship at Wikipedia.

Good essay on internet censorship and why all such attempts are doomed to fail.

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