Banned Books Week is here! No matter where you are, there’s sure to be a way to participate, from in-person events to virtual events. Let’s take a look at what’s happening today…
Looking ahead: Don’t miss Banned Books Week Honorary Chair LeVar Burton, live on Instagram on Wednesday, October 4, at 8:00 p.m. EDT! And our Youth Honorary Chair Da’Taeveyon Daniels will lead a conversation with other youth advocates on Thursday, October 5, at 8:00 p.m. EDT.
Be sure to visit the Banned Books Week events calendar for a full list of what’s happening today and throughout the week!
Banned Books Week Coalition Events
Virtual Event • 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm EDT
Restricting access to under-represented voices is intended to invalidate marginalized identities and has no place in a healthy democracy. The opportunity to learn about experiences different than our own is a fundamental part of what allows our state, and our country, to achieve inclusive progress. As the right to access information is under attack around the country, New Jersey has an obligation to fight back, and to lead by example in defending it.
This event will be moderated by ACLU-NJ Legal Director Jeanne LoCicero. Panelists include:
- Martha Hickson, New Jersey Library Association 2023 Librarian of the Year
- Kasey Meehan, Freedom to Read Program Director at PEN America
- Brielle Winslow-Majette, Deputy Director of Garden State Equality
This event will also be livestreamed on the ACLU of New Jersey’s Facebook page.
Bellwood Public Library, 600 Bohland Ave., Bellwood, IL • 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm CD
Books on the Chopping Block is our annual 60-minute performance of dramatic readings of short excerpts taken from these books. City Lit has teamed up with the ALA in celebration of Banned Books Week since 2006, performing at special events, libraries and bookstores in and around Chicago…and virtually this year.
City Lit Artistic Director Terry McCabe believes that concert readings of excerpts from challenged books actively celebrate the books most at risk, calling attention to the would-be censor’s threat to an educated democracy. “Our focus is literate theatre, so we are naturally concerned by attempts to keep books away from people,” McCabe says. “We are privileged to continue our alliance with the ALA in this important work.”
Virtual Event • 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm EDT
Join us for a discussion with Cheryl Davis, general counsel of the Authors Guild, who will explain the legal issues to know about book bans and her organization’s advocacy work to protect free speech and access to books. Heather Fleming, founder of grassroots organization Missouri Equity Education Partnership, will talk about the myths and realities of book bans today.
A Q&A will follow the presentation; you can pre-submit a question when registering for the event. A recording will be made available for those who cannot attend live.
The event will take place via Zoom with automatic closed captioning. https://authorsguild.org/event/banned-books-and-the-law/
Our mission at Little Free Library is to expand access to books – including banned books – and we invite you to join us! Sharing banned and challenged books in your local Little Free Libraries is a meaningful way to get books into readers’ hands, show your support for reading freedom, and do something positive in your community. Here’s how:
1) Share a banned book in a Little Free Library. Find Little Free Libraries near you using our free mobile app (littlefreelibrary.org/app/).
2) Snap a photo and post it on social media with #bannedbooksweek. Don’t forget to tag Little Free Library so we’re sure to see your photos!
3) Bonus: Little Free Library stewards can enter to win our Banned Books Week giveaway with HarperCollins Children’s Books, which will be open for entry during the month of October (littlefreelibrary.org/books/).
In this challenge, every book you read (to a grandchild or on your own) gives you one “point,” and points can be traded in for free Grandparents For Truth swag! Supplies are limited so make sure to read early and often!
How You Can Join the Challenge
- Sign up for the challenge here.
- Pick a banned book off of our banned book reading list
- Submit a photo or video of you (or you and a grandkid!) reading the banned book. If you post it to social, make sure you tag us (we’re @peoplefor on Twitter/X and Facebook and @peoplefor_ on Instagram)and use the hashtag #bannedbooks2023
- Each photo or video you submit or tag us in is worth one point! Rack up points to get free Grandparents for Truth swag like tshirts, book marks, water bottles, and more!
- Keep an eye on your inbox! At the end of October, we’ll reach out to you to see what swag you’d like.
Supplies are limited – so read early and often!