The American Library foundation has declared the last week of September as Banned Books Week. Every year, libraries, booksellers, publishers, teachers and readers come together in support of intellectual freedom and to highlight books that have been subjected to threats of censorship -- and actual censorship. The frequently challenged books include classics like The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger and Animal Farm by George Orwell.
But there were dozens of books banned in American schools and libraries in 2012, including The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, Beloved by Toni Morrison and Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James. Some are banned for political reasons, religious viewpoint, offensive language and sexually explicit content.
But how much of a problem is book banning these days? How does one ban a book in free speech America today? Do book challenges actually make books more powerful? What are your favorite banned books?
Click here for more information on Banned Books Week
John Szabo, City Librarian, Los Angeles Public Library