Leave the light on: read banned books

Part of the reason books are so fascinating is because there’s something for everyone to enjoy. The issue is that many books, as with all forms or art, can be considered controversial. Due to their potential for conflict, books have been banned throughout history.

The American Library Association saw an opportunity to educate people on books that have been banned or challenged. Thus, in 1982, Banned Books Week was born.

Banned Books Week is a week celebrating controversial books. It is also a chance to educate people on literacy, censorship, and social awareness.

Some of the most popular books that have been banned include: “To Kill a Mockingbird,” “The Hate U Give,” “Thirteen Reasons Why,” and “Two Boys Kissing.”

“To Kill a Mockingbird” has been banned frequently due to its use of racial slurs and its depictions of violence.

“The Hate U Give,” which was published in 2017, has been banned because of profanity, drug use, and sexual references. Another reason for its frequent banishment is that it has been deemed “anti-cop.” The novel was written in response to Oscar Grant’s death in 2009.

“Thirteen Reasons Why” focuses primarily on teen suicide. It is usually banned because some people believe that it promotes suicide.

“Two Boys Kissing” has been banned because of its LGBTQ+ content. According to Banned Library, Robert Dorr checked out the book from a local library and posted a video of him burning the book. Dorr was charged with criminal mischief.

Book burnings have happened in the past as a way of censoring people. One of the most well-known examples are the 1933 book burnings.
These book burnings took place in Nazi Germany. Over 25,000 books were collected and thrown into a bonfire in the middle of the street.

The books burned included those of Freud, Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and many more authors, including Jewish authors.

A more recent mass book burning that happened was in Iran in 2015. ISIS militants torched thousands of books. Some of them were very rare manuscripts, according to Rose Buchanan, a writer at The Independent.
Books have the power to change the world. Books encourage discussion, action, and world change.

They can start a revolution, like the White Rose movement that started in World War II. Sophie Scholl, Hans Scholl, and Christoph Probst were among some of the members.

They started reading anti-Nazi materials and were moved to action. They decided to form a group and soon started making their own anti-Nazi pamphlets. The movement was short-lived as the Scholl siblings and Probst were caught and executed for their crimes.

Another recent example is Malala, who changed the world and influenced millions of people because she wanted an education.These anti-censorship movements encourage education and can lead to an improved world, which is why they are so important.

Though these are just a few examples, they show that by leaving the light on and reading books of all kinds, we are learning and gaining new perspectives. So banned or not, it is vital that we choose to educate, not censor.