Banned Books Week has started!
Since 1982, this annual American Literature Association event has reminded Americans not to take the democratic freedom of self-expression for granted. This year marks Banned Book Week’s 27th anniversary (September 29 through October 6). The Freedom to Read is usually observed during the last week of September each year. The Times’ book editor David Ulin takes a look at the annual event:
I’m ambivalent about Banned Books Week, which runs through Saturday. On the one hand, we clearly still need such a public affirmation, as the recent tumult over Sarah Palin and her “rhetorical” inquiries to the Wasilla, Alaska, public library show.
On the other, Banned Books Week offers up the sort of toothless, feel-good spectacle that makes us less likely to consider the actual ramifications of free expression.
The basic message here is one of astonishment: Why would anyone ban books when literature is such a positive and ennobling force? Yet, while I agree with that, I also believe that some books truly are dangerous, and to ignore that is simply disingenuous.
Check your local library for their Banned Books Week events.