“Bowing to Tea Party pressure, Alabama State Senator Bill Holtzclaw said this week that he thinks The Bluest Eye, Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison’s novel about a little black girl who wishes for blue eyes, should be banned in schools. He only made this statement after GOP members criticized him for opposing a repeal of the federal Common Core standards. The Bluest Eye is on the 11th grade reading list for the Common Core, a set of standards that has been adapted by more than 40 states.” (via The Atlantic Wire)
“A Southeast Steuben County Library trustee recently stepped down from the position after criticizing the library for promoting objectionable material in a letter posted on the official website of the Town of Caton, where she serves as assessor. In the letter, Ann Balch said her Christian beliefs do not allow her to support:
• The viewing of pornography on library computers.
• The promotion of homosexuality, especially in the children’s department.
• The promotion of witchcraft in the young adult’s section.
• The promotion of the Muslim religion without also promoting Christianity as an alternative.
via The Corning Leader)
At White Plains Middle School, teen vampires in the library were just too much for one adult. At B.B. Comer High School in Sylacauga, a handbook on pregnancy and childbirth was moved to the reference shelves, with parental permission required for checkout. At Winterboro High, the novel “White Oleander” stayed on school library shelves, though kids need a parent’s permission to check it out, too. Those local school library concerns were among several uncovered by Anniston Star reporters and University of Alabama journalism students in a months-long, statewide effort to find out which books are challenged by parents — and which are ultimately banned from libraries — in the state’s 132 public school districts.” (via Anniston Star)
“The Kids’ Right to Read Project and its allies sent a letter to the board of Glen Ellyn School District 41 in Illinios asking that they unban The Perks of Being a Wallflower in middle school classroom libraries. KRRP has been a major mover in the enthusiastic grassroots campaign to bring the book back.” (via NCAC)
“Here’s a list “Fifty Shades of Grey” was destined to make: The books most likely to be removed from school and library shelves. On Monday, E L James’ multimillion selling erotic trilogy placed No. 4 on the American Library Association’s annual study of “challenged books,” works subject to complaints from parents, educators and other members of the public. The objections: Offensive language, and, of course, graphic sexual content.”(
“Parents of tweens must be cringing: Earlier this week, Simon & Schuster Children’s released the first ever Judy Blume e-book and, fittingly, the story they chose to inaugurate this momentous occasion was none other than Blume’s often controversial “Forever,” which tells an endearing story of two teenagers innocently in love and ready to do it. The novel was first published in 1975 and, because of its somewhat taboo topic, it is often a highly censored book. In fact, Blume’s tale of blossoming love appears on the American Library Association’s list of the 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books from 1990-2000 and comes in at number 8. In fact, five of her books are on the list and the others include “Blubber” (32), “Deenie” (46), “Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret” (62) and “Tiger Eyes” (78).”
“Washington High School English teacher Teri Hu believes school board prejudice has denied her the chance to teach thought-provoking, outstanding literature. Board members insist they are protecting vulnerable children and sensibilities in diverse Fremont. In what’s becoming an annual showdown that’s uncommon in the liberal Bay Area, the Fremont Unified School District board overruled Hu and rejected novelist Dorothy Allison’s “Bastard Out of Carolina” for the AP English supplemental reading list. While the book detailing horrific childhood abuse will remain in school libraries, it can’t be taught in class.”
Tennessean – “A school district has deemed an awkward teen’s two-page oral sex encounter at boarding school in the coming-of-age novel “Looking for Alaska” too racy, banning the book from class reading lists.
Sumner County Schools are at least the second in the state, after Knox County in March, to keep students from reading it together in class.”
Philadelphia Daily News – “YOU WOULD think that in this day and age – when Exxon/Mobil commercials tell us American children are dumber than paste – parents would be happy that their children were reading anything longer than a tweet, but for the second year in a row, Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games trilogy was among the most “challenged” books, as reported Sunday by the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom. The ALA defines a challenge as “a formal, written complaint filed with a library or school requesting that a book or other material be restricted or removed because of its content or appropriateness.”