collage with ala imageBanned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read, and the value of free and open access to information. Skyline College Library is celebrating Banned Books Week from September 25 – October 1, 2016 with special displays of some of the most challenged books of all time including In Cold Blood, The Bible, Gone with the Wind, Harry Potter, The Great Gatsby, and many other titles. Why are particular books challenged, banned or subject to censorship?  These books have been deemed offensive because of religious viewpoints, sexuality, language, or violence.

On September 28, library staff members Allison Hughes and Mary Torres Volken interacted with students in front of the Learning Center with information about some frequently challenged and banned books. The books displayed in the Skyline College Library during Banned Books Week have all been targeted with removal or restrictions in libraries and schools. While books have been and continue to be banned, part of the Banned Books Week celebration is the fact that, in a majority of cases, the books have remained available. This happens only thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, students, and community members who stand up and speak out for the freedom to read!

Article by Mary Torres Volken | Photos by Allison Hughes and Pearl Ly