USA: Literature and censorship – the biggest challenge is apathy
The American organisation National Coalition Against Censorship writes:
“For nearly as long as the written word has existed, it has been a target for censorship. (…) The difference between the book bans of yesteryear and the battle against censorship today is that, with vigilance, we have the power to stand up to censorship and defend the right to freedom of expression through the written word. The biggest obstacle we face is apathy.
“Today, literary works are challenged and sometimes banned because of sexual content, profanity, violence, references to race and ethnicity, and yes, religion, plus a variety of other reasons. Parents and school boards have challenged books as diverse as Forever by Judy Blume and The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison, deeming certain sexual passages inappropriate for young people. Works such as And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson and It’s Perfectly Normal by Robie Harris frequently face demands for library shelf removal for their focus on gay/lesbian issues. And the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling and the Scary Stories series by Alvin Schwartz, among others, have been challenged by dozens of parents, administrators, and clergy for their scary, violent, or occult themes. Written works on evolution have also faced censorship, as have books that represent race in a way that is deemed objectionable by certain groups.”
» Continue reading: Books: Always the center of censorship controversies?
» See also: NCAC’s Book Censorship Toolkit