Puttering around the Internet this morning (waiting for the store to open so I can get creamer for my tea, not writing on the WiP because, uh, creamer for my caffeine delivery system, and half the household is still abed, so I’m being quiet!) I mosied on over to Insatiable Book Sluts to peek at their (huge!) Banned Book Week post. (okay. Post isn’t huge. Commentary is HUGE), which then had be jumping over to the ALA’s website.
I might have already admitted here, but if I haven’t I will now: I missed out on having to read a lot of the classic literature that most have to read in school. My high school was special. Trying to escape one particular school system, I opted for the regional vocational high school at a time when that school was playing around with teaching to the lowest common denominator in the academic side of our school year. I, um, was not among the lowest common denominators, and so school was mostly boring and not at all challenging. (Until senior year when they decided to stick me in pre-Cal *and* physics when my highest math exposure was Algebra I. Thank god for the pre-Cal teacher; I’d had him previously for my science classes, and he was all, “I know you aren’t stupid, you don’t have the prereqs for this course, why won’t they switch you out, I’ll go talk to them.” That was decidedly NOT boring, but also, not happy) So, my required reading for my high school career included a whole flipping year spent on the Diary of Anne Frank (and I don’t care how important a book and topic that was, teachers should not be allowed to have their own peeves and passions take over a WHOLE YEAR), The Pearl, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, The Hobbit, and Old Man and the Sea (which is the reason why I will never read Hemmingway again).
I have read some classics on my own, because that’s what I do. I’ve never really done more than look at these banned book lists and said, “hrm, people are weird.”
Trying to get my hands on a concise banned book list, and that’s proving to be hard (possibly because of the caffeine situation?) but I am curious to see what on there I have already read and what on there I want to read. Do I want to take break from my reading and read a banned book next week? Or do I want to strive, as a matter of course, to include more in my annual reading?
Thank goodness they’re pushing to ban Harry Potter though. Don’t want all those kids turning into witches and wizards. What was she thinking, writing such a realistic representation of the occult world?
What are your favorite banned or challenged books? Are you participating in Banned Book Week?
Edited to add: caffeine makes all the difference in the world. Or, in the posting. I found: the ACLU’s page of banned or challenged books is Oregon for 2009-2010, and 1979-2010. it’s very likely to be a useful tool, so I’m adding it here. Huzzah caffeine!