Banned Books Week

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According to the American Library Association there were “at least 513 actual and attempted book bannings in the US in 2008.” At the top of the list? And Tango Makes Three by Peter Parnell and Justin Richardson. That’s right. A children’s book about penguins.

The Nation‘s Peter Rothberg is not surprised that US citizens are still attempting to ban books; no what surprises him is the ALA’s interactive map that shows where in the US the bannings have taken place. “Would you have guessed that many of the bluest states have been just as guilty as the cradle of the Confederacy?”

Rothberg’s post highlights Banned Books Week (which is this week in case you were unaware), “the only national celebration of the freedom to read.”


Isaac Fitzgerald has been a firefighter, worked on a boat, and was once given a sword by a king, thereby accomplishing three out of five of his childhood goals. Formerly of The Rumpus and McSweeney’s and most recently the founding editor of BuzzFeed Books, Isaac is now the co-host of BuzzFeed News’ Twitter Morning Show, #AMtoDM. He also appears frequently on The Today Show to talk books, and is co-author of Pen & Ink: Tattoos and the Stories Behind Them and Knives & Ink: Chefs and the Stories Behind Their Tattoos (with Recipes) (winner of an IACP award), and the author of a YA novel and picture book forthcoming from Bloomsbury. He uses Twitter. More from this author →