'Banned Books Week' is an annual celebration of the freedom to read. Launched in 1982, Banned Books Week was created due to the sudden surge of challenged books in schools, bookstores and libraries. This week draws national attention to the harms of censorship and the value of free and open access to information. “Banned books week is not only about exposing the dangers of censorship, but also about celebrating our freedom to read," said Rebekka Jones, collection management coordinator at Scottsdale Public Library. “Championing that freedom to read ensures that we honor the diversity inherent in our community and secures the right of all citizens to explore aspects of themselves and our world at their library.”
Books can either be challenged or banned. A challenge is an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group. A banning is the removal of those materials. Books are typically challenged with the intention to protect others (frequently children) from difficult ideas and information.
At Scottsdale Public Library, challenges do occur, however only one or two per year. Youth and adult materials are challenged the most, generally for content regarding sexuality and violence. If a patron wishes to challenge a book, they may complete and submit the Customer’s Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form.
By highlighting Banned Books Week with displays at all four library branches, Scottsdale Public Library hopes to bring awareness to the harms of censorship and celebrate the freedom to information.
Learn more about Banned Books Week: BannedBooksWeek.org