The Norman Transcript

Community News Network

September 23, 2013

Racism, sex and drugs: Here are 10 frequently-banned books

Banned Book Week, September 22-28, celebrates the "freedom to read" and promotes awareness of censorship in schools and libraries. Here are 10 of the more well-known challenged books, out of the hundreds listed by the American Library Association.

 

 

What are the top reasons books are banned or challenged? Offensive language, sexual content, religious material and content deemed "inappropriate for the age group."

"The Catcher in the Rye", J.D. Salinger,

"The Catcher in the Rye," is frequently removed from classrooms and school libraries because it is “unacceptable,” “obscene,” “blasphemous,” “negative,” “foul,” “filthy,” and “undermines morality.”

"Uncle Tom's Cabin," Harriet Beecher Stowe

The historically accurate representation of the treatment of slaves in America has resulted in multiple challenges from would-be censors.

 

 

"Daddy’s Roommate," Michael Willhoite

The book, which deals with having a homosexual parent, was the second most challenged book in 1990-1999. "Heather Has Two Mommies" by Lesléa Newman, portrayed the same scenario with a lesbian couple and was also among the top ten most challenged books of the 90s.

"I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings," Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou's 1969 autobiography, dealing with issues like rape and racism, is among one of the most banned books in the United States.

"The Great Gatsby," F. Scott Fitzgerald

Often called the great American novel, "The Great Gatsby" is among the most challenged and banned books. Would-be censors cite "language and sexual references" in the book.

"The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian," Sherman Alexie.

Sherman Alexie's young adult novel has been drawing attention for depictions of sexuality, racism, violence, substance abuse and poverty.

"Fahrenheit 451," Ray Bradbury

The dystopian novel about censorship and the burning of books ironically makes the list for most challenged books in America.

Venado Middle school in Irvine, Calif. allowed only a version of the book in which all the “hells” and “damns” were blacked out. Other challengers have complained the book violated their religious beliefs.

"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn," Mark Twain

Twain's book remains one of the most challenged of all time, with objectors claiming the book promotes racism and contains offensive language.

"Howl and other poems," Allen Ginsberg,

Depictions of homosexuality have earned "Howl" a number of challenges.

Harry Potter (series), J.K. Rowling

Every book in the wizarding series of novels has been challenged, primarily by religious groups believing the book's magical world to be Satanic.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Community News Network
  • Victimized by the 'marriage penalty'

    In a few short months, I'll pass the milestone that every little girl dreams of: the day she swears - before family and God, in sickness and in health, all in the name of love - that she's willing to pay a much higher tax rate.

    April 15, 2014

  • Allergies are the real midlife crisis

    One of the biggest mysteries is why the disease comes and goes, and then comes and goes again. People tend to experience intense allergies between the ages of 5 and 16, then get a couple of decades off before the symptoms return in the 30s, only to diminish around retirement age.

    April 15, 2014

  • treadmill-very-fast.jpg Tax deduction for a gym membership?

    April marks another tax season when millions of Americans will deduct expenses related to home ownership, children and education from their annual tax bill. These deductions exist because of their perceived value to society; they encourage behaviors that keep the wheels of the economy turning. So why shouldn't the tax code be revised to reward preventive health?

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • bomb1 VIDEO: A year after marathon bombing, Boston remains strong

    The City of Boston came together Tuesday to honor those who were injured and lost their lives at the Boston Marathon on the one-year anniversary of the bombing. While the day was sure to be emotional, those affected by last year's race are showing they won't let the tragedy keep them down.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Google acquires drone maker Titan Aerospace to spread Internet

    Google is adding drones to its fleets of robots and driverless cars.
    The Internet search company said it acquired Titan Aerospace, the maker of high-altitude, solar-powered satellites that provides customer access to data services around the world. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.

    April 14, 2014

  • E-Cigarettes target youth with festivals, lawmakers say

    The findings, in a survey released Monday by members of Congress, should prod U.S. regulators to curb the industry, the lawmakers said. While e-cigarettes currently are unregulated, the Food and Drug Administration is working on a plan that would extend its tobacco oversight to the products.

    April 14, 2014

  • Search teams will send unmanned sub to look for missing Malaysian airliner

    Teams searching for a missing Malaysian airliner are planning for the first time to send an unmanned submarine into the depths of the Indian Ocean to look for wreckage, an Australian official leading the multi-nation search said Monday.

    April 14, 2014

  • Why Facebook is getting into the banking game

    Who would want to use Facebook as a bank? That's the question that immediately arises from news that the social network intends to get into the electronic money business.

    April 14, 2014

  • Screen shot 2014-04-11 at 4.49.09 PM.png Train, entertain your pets with these 3 smartphone apps

    While they may not have thumbs to use the phone, pets can benefit from smartphone apps designed specifically for them.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stepping forward: The real Colbert

    Letterman changed the late-night TV game between his run on NBC's "Late Night" and starting the "Late Show" franchise in 1993. And while it's tough to replace a pop-culture icon, Colbert, in terms of pedigree and sense of humor, makes the most sense.

    April 11, 2014