Banned Books Week: Our right to read, September 24-30, 2017

Events

Explore the history of censorship and joys of unrestricted reading this Banned Books Week.

Every year, bookstores, libraries, universities and organizations host engaging programs that spotlight censorship. Select a state below to find out what events are taking place in your area.

To submit an event for Banned Books Week 2017, complete our event form.

AR

  • Malvern
    Leopards Rights to Read
    The library will display books that have been banned. They will be covered with black paper. Classroom visits will provide Book talks, banned book debate, and videos.
    September 25-27, 2017
    Malvern High School
    525 E. Highland
    Malvern, AR 72104
    Ashley Nelson
    870-223-1687
    anelson@malvernleopards.org




CA

  • San Francisco
    Phonochrome Presents: Banned Books Solidarity Concert
    Phonochrome is a critically acclaimed, Bay Area chamber ensemble that seeks to increase the relevance and impact of chamber music by performing concerts that contextualize music and relate to cultures of history, politics, social movements, and other art forms. This concert, curated in support of the annual event Banned Books Week, aims to raise awareness of the political oppression of artists, journalists, and musicians, as well as highlight the importance of our First Amendment rights and the ongoing work of organizations like the American Library Association and the Freedom to Read Foundation. This program is a diverse and compelling array of music that exemplifies various forms of political censorship. Cellist Natalie Raney opens the concert with the Catalonian folk song, “Song of the Birds,” made famous by cellist Pablo Casals during his self-imposed political exile from Spain. Numerous other works, such as Aaron Copland’s “As It Fell Upon A Day” and Claude Debussy’s “Chansons de Bilitis,” were censored in their home countries as well as in China during Mao Zedong’s infamous cultural revolution. Performances of Dorothy Parker’s “Songs of Perfect Propriety” and Maya Angelou’s “Calypso Songs” honor two outspoken literary women who were silenced for their work. Parker was investigated by the FBI and placed on the Hollywood Blacklist for her role in pre-WWII antifascist organizations, and Maya Angelou’s autobiography remains one of the most contested books in American literary history. Concluding the performance will be a contemporary arrangement of “Strange Fruit,” a song written by Jewish poet Abel Meerepol in protest of racist lynchings, and which later became an anthem for the American Civil Rights movement. Tickets available at the door or online at http://centerfornewmusic.com/calendar/phonochrome-banned-books-solidarity-concert. Doors at 11:30 for a pre-concert coffee reception provided by Ritual Coffee Roasters. Concert at 12:00 p.m. Post-concert book reception courtesy of The Green Arcade
    September 24, 2017
    Center for New Music
    55 Taylor Street
    San Francisco, CA 94102
    Elizabeth Talbert
    (646) 932-0792
    talbert.flute@gmail.com




CO

  • Grand Junction
    Freedom to Read Panel Discussion
    “Almost all human beings have an infinite capacity for taking things for granted.” — Aldous Huxley, author of Brave New World. CMU Library invites our Grand Junction community to engage in a night of readings and discussion celebrating the freedom to read. In recognition of Banned Books Week 2017, our campus and local community are welcomed to enjoy this panel-style event featuring CMU faculty and staff. Participants will hear about our Freedom to Read displays, ways to engage in the topic of information freedom throughout the week, and ways to engage with materials impacted by challenges and bans throughout the 2017-2018 year. “If one reads enough books one has a fighting chance. Or better, one’s chances of survival increase with each book one reads.” — Sherman Alexie, author of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
    September 25, 2017
    Tomlinson Library, Colorado Mesa University
    Grand Junction, CO 81501
    Laureen Cantwell
    970.248.1865
    lcantwell@coloradomesa.edu




HI

  • Kāneʻohe
    Banned Books Week Read-Out
    September 27, 2017 from 4-5:30 p.m.
    Windward Community College Library Learning Commons Breezeway
    45-720 Keaʻahala Road
    Kāneʻohe, HI 96744
    Mariko Kershaw
    (808) 235-7439
    kershaw@hawaii.edu




IA

  • Altoona
    Banned Book BINGO
    Never judge a book by its cover. In honor of Banned Book Week, we will be having a family Banned Book BINGO night. We will show images of the covers of banned and challenged books and participants will have to find the titles on their BINGO cards. The winners will earn prizes! This is a family event. All ages may participate. Registration is required. There will be an easy and a harder version of the bingo cards, so kids can play along!
    September 26, 2017
    Altoona Public Library
    700 Eigth St. SW
    Altoona, IA 50009
    Sheila Olson
    515-967-3881
    solson@altoona.lib.ia.us




IL

  • Chicago
    Osama Taiym Presents BPLP Annual BBW READ OUT
    Join us for Browne Parker Literary Press Annual Banned Books Week Read Out. In the past, special guests have included Toni Morrison and Osama Taiym. This year, unity and celebration of diversity in literature is more important than ever. Once more, our annual Banned Books Week event will feature Pulitzer Prize winners Toni Morrison and Osama Taiym reading selected excepts from "The Bluest Eye" by Toni Morrison. For more than a decade, we have hosted our annual read out to commemorate banned books in Chicago during Banned Books Week, featuring notable authors and displays. Our annual read out is free to attend and will feature complementary refreshments and a host of experiences to further enhance unity on all sides through commemoration and appreciation of banned books, hosted in South Side Chicago. Everyone is encouraged to attend.
    Browne Parker Literary Press
    Chicago, IL 60602
    David Glocke
    (323) 438-5074
    Dglock@post.com




  • Normal
    Discovering Austen
    September 25, 2017
    Normal Public Library
    206 W. College Ave.
    Normal, IL 61761
    John Fischer
    309-433-3488
    jfischer@normalpl.org




MD

  • New Windsor
    You Gotta Fight for your Right to Read Banned Books!
    During this program, a panel of experts will discuss the joys and challenges of supporting teens' right to read freely. Learn why books in school and public library collections are often challenged, how to talk to those concerned about materials, how to encourage teens to defend their right to read, and why it's important for teens to have access to a diversity of ideas and viewpoints. The panel will include a local public library and school librarian, a YA author, a teen, and a parent of a teen! Check in begins at 1:30! We hope to see you there!
    September 28, 2017
    Carroll County Public Library Headquarters
    1100 Green Valley Rd
    New Windsor, MD 21776
    Nay Keppler
    410-861-7932
    nkeppler@frederickcountymd.gov




ND

  • Mayville
    Dr. Emily Knox to Visit Mayville State University
    In recognition of Banned Books Week, Mayville State University's Byrnes-Quanbeck Library and Office of Diversity and Inclusion are hosting guest faculty member, Dr. Emily Knox from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her visit features a keynote address entitled "Censorship and the Power of Reading." In addition to other class lectures and faculty discussions, there will be a Banned Book Read-Out open to all in and around the campus.
    September 29, 2017
    Mayville State University
    Mayville, ND 58257
    Aubrey Madler
    701-788-4814
    aubrey.madler@mayvillestate.edu




NE

  • Omaha
    Banned Books Week Party with Solid Jackson Books & Dundee Book Company
    Celebrate Banned Books Week with your friends at Solid Jackson Books and Dundee Book Company at Brothers Lounge! Come grab a pint or two, join the conversation about why it's important to keep free speech free, and stick it to the book-burners by perusing important books that some want to label as obscene. And some that are obscene! A selection of banned books (both used and new) will be available for purchase.
    September 28, 2017
    Brothers Lounge
    3812 Farnam St.
    Omaha, NE 68131
    Nicole Wheeler
    402-304-8535
    nicole@dundeebook.co




NV

  • Las Vegas
    Uncensored Voices: Celebrating Your Freedom to Read
    Banned Books Week is the annual celebration of the freedom to read and, in 2017, will run from September 24th thru 30th. Celebrate our right to read while learning about the current state of censorship in the United States and test your knowledge of banned books by participating in fun trivia! End the evening with our special guests reading excerpts from banned and/or challenged books! According to the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF), there was an alarming 17% increase in book censorship complaints in 2016. Since most challenges are not reported, the actual number is probably much higher. Even more disturbing, while only 10% of the titles reported to OIF are normally removed from the institutions receiving the challenges, half of the most frequently challenged books were actually banned last year. Presented by the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District, the ACLU of Nevada, UNLV Libraries Teacher Development& Resources Library, and Majestic Repertory Theatre. For more information on this free performance, call 702-507-3459.
    September 26, 2017
    Clark County Library
    1401 E. Flamingo Road
    Las Vegas , NV 89119
    Suzanne Scott
    702-507-3459
    scotts@lvccld.org




OH

  • East Cleveland
    Your Right to Read
    Join Your Right to Read: A Conversation with Ann Rowlett, Deputy Director of ACLU of Ohio. The freedom to read is essential to democracy, but it is also constantly under attack by private groups and public authorities trying to limit access, label, and censor “controversial” reading materials.
    September 25, 2017
    East Cleveland Public Library
    14101 Euclid Avenue
    East Cleveland, OH 44112
    Dr. Hogan
    216-541-4128
    erika.hogan@ecpl.lib.oh.us




PA

  • Erie
    Rebel Readers
    REBEL READERS. Thursday, Sept. 28 | 6:30-7:30 PM | Room 219. Celebrate the freedom to read during Banned Books Week. TAB (Teen Advisory Board) will lead activities and discussion on censorship, the power of words, freedom of information and their right to choose what they read. Words have power.
    September 28, 2017
    Erie County Public Library
    160 East Front Street
    Erie, PA 16508
    Tammy Blount
    814-451-6904
    tblount@eriecountypa.gov




  • Pittsburgh
    Read Out
    In direct response to the recent events in Charlottesville and across the nation, City Books has decided to shine a spotlight on books that feature equity, diversity, and inclusion as a primary function of character and plot. As a result, we have selected "The Diary of Anne Frank" and "Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry" by Mildred Taylor as our Read Out selections for the week. On Sunday, Sept 24, readers will gather to read "The Diary of Anne Frank" to each other and to the public. Readers can sign up for 20-minute slots between 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. and will receive a free copy of the book they will be reading aloud. Food and beverages will be provided. Please contact the store for scheduling.
    September 24, 2017
    City Books
    908 Galveston Ave
    Pittsburgh, PA 15233
    Arlan Hess
    412-321-7323
    citybookspgh@gmail.com




  • Pittsburgh
    Read Out
    In direct response to the recent events in Charlottesville and across the nation, City Books has decided to shine a spotlight on books that feature equity, diversity, and inclusion as a primary function of character and plot. As a result, we have selected The Diary of Anne Frank and Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry by Mildred Taylor as our Read Out selections for the week. On Saturday, Sept 30, readers will gather to read Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry to each other and to the public. Readers can sign up for 20-minute slots between 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. and will receive a free copy of the book they will be reading aloud. Food and beverages will be provided. Please contact the store for scheduling.
    September 30, 2017
    City Books
    908 Galveston Ave
    Pittsburgh, PA 15233
    Arlan Hess
    412-321-7323
    citybookspgh@gmail.com




VA

  • Charlottesville
    Free Speech Palooza
    Students for Individual Liberty at UVA runs an annual free speech event. This year, our event lies in Banned Books Week, so we decided to incorporate it in our normal proceedings to showcase all kinds of free speech advocacy! Students will vote on a group of banned or challenged books for their favorite (likely between Persepolis, Fun Home, Fahrenheit 451, To Kill a Mockingbird, or Beloved). After which, we plan on donating copies of the favorite book to every public library in Charlottesville. We think it will be a fun, important event, especially as some of those books, namely Beloved, were challenged in Virginia high schools that many UVA students attended.
    September 27, 2017
    University of Virginia
    Charlottesville, VA 22039
    Rachel Pehrsson
    703-232-9698
    rhp8rg@virginia.edu




  • Salem
    Banned Books & Censorship Panel
    September 26, 2017
    Roanoke College Fintel Library
    221 College Lane
    Salem, VA 24153
    Jane Francis Nowell
    865-776-6565
    jfnowell@mail.roanoke.edu




VT

  • Rutland
    Banned Books Week Awareness and gathering
    Throughout the week Baxter St LFL will have information available to educate the community about banned books and the implications of banning books. There will be a variety of challenged/banned books in our library available to the public as well as lists of banned/challenged books. On 9/30 at 1 p.m. to wrap the week off, we invite everyone to join us at Baxter St. Park by the LFL for activities, readings, music! There will be some Banned Books Week memorabilia giveaways and fun for all!
    September 24-30 (Closing event on September 30 at 1 p.m.)
    Baxter St Park Little Free Library
    63 Baxter St
    Rutland, VT 05701
    Dianna Bessette
    802-353-7051
    Baxterstreetlfl@gmail.com




WI

  • Milwaukee
    Banned Books Week Talk & Workshop
    September 25, 2017 • 3:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Food will be served • Doors open at 3:15 p.m. Address: UWM Golda Meir Library, 4th Floor Conference Center, 2311 E. Hartford Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53211. The Banned Books Week Talk, “Words have power! Banned Books and the Need to Read,” begins at 3:30 p.m. The American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) has long tracked attempts to have books, programs, exhibits, and speakers banned or restricted in libraries and schools. What do the times tell us about trends in censorship, the emerging issues of intellectual freedom, and the importance of defending the freedom to read? Join OIF Director James LaRue for a review of some of the most common challenges, and a discussion of the intersection of intellectual freedom and social justice. The workshop "Ethics, Policy and Institutional Value" begins at 5 p.m. Our policies are the hinge between our professional ethics and the position of the library in the local community. We will discuss the relationship between our ethical values and our intellectual freedom policies as a foundation of local institutional standing. Please bring sample policies to discuss and review. Facilitated by: Dr. Joyce Latham, associate professor at UW-Milwaukee, School of Information Studies. Register online: http://uwm.edu/informationstudies/event/banned-books-week-talk-workshop/
    September 25, 2017
    University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
    2311 E Hartford Ave
    Milwaukee, WI 53211
    Rebecca Hall
    414-229-4707
    rjhall@uwm.edu




  • Milwaukee
    Banned Books Week Talk & Workshop
    September 25, 2017 • 3:30 – 6:30 p.m. Food will be served. Doors open at 3:15. Address: UWM Golda Meir Library, 4th Floor Conference Center, 2311 E. Hartford Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53211. At 3:30 p.m., there will be a Banned Books Week Talk: “Words have power! Banned Books and the Need to Read.” The American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) has long tracked attempts to have books, programs, exhibits, and speakers banned or restricted in libraries and schools. What do the times tell us about trends in censorship, the emerging issues of intellectual freedom, and the importance of defending the freedom to read? Join OIF Director James LaRue for a review of some of the most common challenges, and a discussion of the intersection of intellectual freedom and social justice. At 5 p.m., there will be a workshop: "Ethics, Policy and Institutional Value." Our policies are the hinge between our professional ethics and the position of the library in the local community. We will discuss the relationship between our ethical values and our intellectual freedom policies as a foundation of local institutional standing. Please bring sample policies to discuss and review. Facilitated by: Dr. Joyce Latham, Associate Professor, UW-Milwaukee, School of Information Studies.
    September 25, 2017
    University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
    2311 E Hartford Ave
    Milwaukee, WI 53211
    Rebecca Hall
    414-229-2855
    rjhall@uwm.edu




  • Milwaukee
    Words Have Power! Banned Books Buffet at East
    Celebrate Banned Books Week with a Buffet of Banned Books! Banned Books Week is an annual celebration of the freedom to read and recognition of the importance of the First Amendment. The buffet will include samplings from the most challenged books across the country. Celebrate your right to read at East Branch library, and make a few banned book buttons!
    September, 30, 2017
    Milwaukee Public Library East Branch
    Milwaukee, WI 53211
    Elizabeth Gabriel
    414-286-3000
    eagabri@milwaukee.gov