Skip to main content

Belated Banned Books Week or Charlotte's Web is Dangerous For Your Children

For Banned Books Week we put up a nice display of the books we owned that have been popular targets for challenges. It was nice, but I didn't really think much about it since I've been in this profession long enough that I could put together that list of titles in my sleep.

However, I was leading a tour through the library and one of the students brought the title Charlotte's Web to my attention, and asked why in the world a beloved children's book like that had been banned.

This is where I have to add that as someone who grew up on a hog farm, I got really tired of people asking me if I ever had a pet pig like Wilbur (the answer is no), but I still wore out my parents' VHS copy of the movie based on the book.

I told the student I wasn't sure why it was banned, but guessed that it probably had something to do with talking animals. Only later did I discover I just how horribly right I was.

Last year I wrote about how I was a little burned out on Banned Books Week, but seeing a challenge to a generally uncontroversial book like this reminds me of just how important intellectual freedom is, and that while we may not think much of minor infringements on that freedom, that road can quickly run down the slippery slope to situations like the ones explained in the Banned Books Awareness post I linked above.
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

2018 Reading Resolutions

As usual I'll be attempting to read 100 books in 2018.

Total Books Read: 49 of 100

I'm also going to valiantly try to read 20 books I own and get through the backlog on my bookcase. It would really help if I didn't do so much of my reading on audio (nearly all of which are borrowed at work) or get distracted when I'm looking for my next print read by all the pretty books at work.

Books I Own: 2 of 20
Growing Up Country: Memories of an Iowa Farm Girl by Carol BodensteinerSay No to the Bro by Kat Helgeson
I'm also adjusting my series finishing goal this year. Life is too short to spend finishing series I only feel meh about, so finishing 5 series this year is plenty.

Series Finished/Caught Up: 6 of 10
The War That Saved My Life Series by Kimberly Brubaker BradleySix of Crows Series by Leigh BardugoA Narwhal and Jelly Book Series by Ben ClantonHis Fair Assassin Series by Robin LaFevers (next book expected in 2019)A Court of Thorns and Roses Series by Sarah J. Maas (next bo…

This Year's Reflections on Banned Books Week

... or as I think I'm going to start calling it, Librarian Christmas, the most hyped (by librarians) library holiday of the year. I've been dutifully wearing my "i read banned books" bracelet all week and awaiting patron questions about our banned books displays.

I've written in past years about how I'm sort of over Banned Books Week, but I keep getting pulled back in when I hear about some of the ridiculous books people are trying to ban. This year's is one I just read for the first time this summer, Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya. Apparently it was considerate too graphic and inappropriate for a high school audience. Interesting, considering the story's narrator is in elementary school. Basically, it has the usual collection of difficult to discuss ideas: violence, death, questioning faith in God, a child's confusion about how adult sexual relationships work, but since it's all told from the point of view of a 6-year-old, it's not ter…

Finding Reliable Health Information Online

While going through an old blog of mine, I found this summary of a presentation I gave in late 2006 on finding reliable health information online. Surprisingly most of it is at least somewhat relevant today. Since I'm trying to relive the days when I used to research medical information for a living, this wasn't a bad way to jog my memory.
Finding Reliable Health Information Online
MedlinePlus: This site is put together by the National Library of Medicine (NLM) as a comprehensive consumer health resource. It is relatively easy to use and requires little or no knowledge of medical terminology. Use it like a search engine and simply type your term into the search box, or explore one of MedlinePlus’ specific resources, including drug information, dictionary, and medical encyclopedia. http://medlineplus.gov
Quackwatch: A great site for checking out “too good to be true” medical claims. This non-profit corporation is dedicated to combating “health-related frauds, myths, fads, fallacies…