Where they have burned books, they will end in burning human beings — Heinrich Heine (1821)
I hadn’t paid much attention to the growing "banned books" problem in American schools and libraries, but I saw an ad on a Chicago train yesterday and dug in a bit.
Here are some of the books that have been "challenged" in 2007 and earlier years:
To Kill A Mockingbird — Harper Lee
Lolita — Vladimir Nabokov
1984 — George Orwell
Cather in the Rye — J.D. Salinger
Grapes of Wrath — John Steinbeck
Catch-22 — Joseph Heller
Go Tell it on the Mountain — James Baldwin
Harry Potter series — J.K. Rowling
All the Harry Potter novels are targeted by fundamentalist Christian groups. I don’t believe in book banning, but I do wish my friends would read a bit less Rowling and a bit more of anything else. I haven’t seen any of Andrew Sullivan’s books on the list. But neither did I see James Dobson’s.
I had no idea that "book challenging" and "book banning" were so pervasive in this country.
Not much else to say really — but the struggle between reason and dogma requires us to keep our eyes and minds open.
— Steve Clemons