Autumn begins, days are shorter, nights are cooler, and Banned Books Week begins.
As promised, this week I’ll provide a daily link to the websites of an organizations involved in bringing attention to censorship.
Today, let me introduce you to the Banned Books Week Coalition (BBWC), a group dedicated to defending the right to read. If you want to know what Banned Books Week is all about, or why it was started, this website is an excellent place to begin. Videos, event announcements, resources for holding your own event — all these and more can be found at the BBWC website.
So, and this is just for fun, here’s a scavenger hunt for you. 1. Under “About”, find the list of BBW Coalition members.
2. Under “Resources”, find the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund posters and “shelftalkers” (and learn a new term in the process).
3. Under “Latest News”, locate the link to Gene Luen Yang’s upcoming 28 September conversation about comics, and the link to the ALA’s “Dear Banned Author” campaign. Which author would you write to?
The “Dear Banned Author” letter I would want to write goes to Mark Twain, for The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. There are plenty of problems with that novel, but it still stands as one of the great works of 19th century literature. Funny story — when Twain learned that his book had been banned, he was pleased, for he knew it meant more people would buy the book, to see what all the fuss was about. A perfect example of the Law of Unintended Consequences.
And a wee reminder: September is Library Card Sign Up Month. It isn’t too late to get yours. I’ve had one for ages, although this latest plastic version is much longer-lasting than the flimsy paper ones of the past.
Support your local libraries!