“The point is obvious. There is more than one way to burn a book. And the world is full of people running about with lit matches.” -Ray Bradbury
Let’s face it; the vast majority of people don’t read as much as they want to or as much as they should. Life has a habit of getting in the way, of making us feel guilty and selfish when we take time for ourselves. And with humanity in the middle of a technological revolution, what little free time we do manage to cobble together usually ends up dedicated to our televisions, computers, or phones. However, having recently found myself with a relative abundance of free time, I realized that something else still stood between me and reading: I didn’t know what to read. I didn’t know where to start.
As an avid book lover with eclectic literary tastes, I was perplexed by my inability to simply choose a new book. What I needed was a list of eligible books, a place to start in my search for the next great novel. And then it occurred to me; why not choose books off of perhaps the most infamous book list in American history, the list of most commonly banned and challenged books? Why not dedicate my free time to reading those exact books that certain narrow-minded and excessively conservative people would have permanently removed from consideration if given the chance? And thus the Banned Book Brigade was born.
Through this blog, I will chronicle my own journey through a large (but certainly not exhaustive) list of books that have been commonly banned and challenged in American schools. This literary adventure will traverse the full scope of genres, from children’s books to great American classics and everything in between. For each book, I will not only provide the “rationale” for its proposed censorship, but also my own views on the merits and mishaps of each work. I hope that this blog will help readers find new material and will shed some light on underrepresented and obscure works, in addition to famous novels and classics.
It will be my own literary rebellion.