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How Scandalous is Your Reading History? (Part II)

It’s just one day away! Tomorrow night at our First Friday Event, Writers & Books will be celebrating some of the most influential (and thus banned) works of literature with a special projection on the side our building.  Some of the books on the list are expected, others are more surprising. The history of all of them, however, are interesting and well-worth exploring. Below is a second brief list (for the first list, please refer to my earlier post) of some of the America’s most notoriously banned books.

For the full list and history, you’ll have to come tomorrow at 8:30 sharp! We can’t wait to see you there.

1. The Harry Potter Series by: J.K. Rowling
It’s hard to imagine one of the most popular book (and later movie) series was at one time unavailable to some children. However, in 2007, a private school in Wakefield, MA pulled Harry, Dumbledore, Hermione, Ron, and the rest of the gang from their library shelves due to it’s anti-Catholic ideas.

2. The Color Purple by: Alice Walker
The list of high schools that have banned Walker’s novel is impressive, dating back to the very year it was published — 1982. It isn’t hard to imagine why. The violence, incest, and racial matters are just a few of the things that have made people uncomfortable throughout the years, despite it being the “truth” that she seeks to find in writing. The book won a Pulitzer Prize in 1983.

3. Go Ask Alice by: Beatrice Sparks
Like many of the works on the banned list, Spark’s novel raises eyebrows due to it’s “offensive language”, drug use, and sex. It has been one of the most frequently banned books since its publication in 1971.

4. Cat’s Cradle by: Kurt Vonnegut
An author known for his provocative works, Vonnegut tackled many topical issues with his 1963 publication of Cat’s Cradle. Discussing nuclear war and religious issues, among other things, the book was first banned in 1972 by a school board in Ohio. The school refused to give any specific reason why they forbid the book. The ban was lifted in 1976.

5. Lady Chatterly’s Lover by: D.H. Lawrence

The story of Constance, a woman of privilege who is involved in an affair with her gamekeeper, the book’s use of explicit language and detailed accounts of sexual encounters gave cause for many contemporaries in 1928 metaphorically swoon at the novel’s indecency. The book was extremely controversial and the subject of several obscenity trials from the time of its publication until the early 1960s.

For the full list of the 27 books that made the cut, you will just have to come visit tomorrow night!