It’s the most interesting week of the year: Banned Books Week! I’ve written about it before – and will likely write about it again – but we owe so much to literature, and to books being accessible. Books are such a huge factor in the development of empathy. And how can we develop empathy without being exposed to all these different perspectives and experiences?
Many people have more articulate thoughts on the subject than I do, and the diversity movement within YA literature (#WeNeedDiverseBooks) is really making an impact through the Banned Books Week organization. It’s fantastic to see the cohesion of these two movements, since they are often interrelated. I highly encourage y’all to go check them out and see what they have to say this week!
I’m definitely planning on making some banned recommendations this week – per usual. I feel as if I’ve expressed many of my thoughts on the subject though, so for now, I’ll just leave y’all with my discussions from previous years.
Some Thoughts of Mine
Do young book characters have an obligation to be morally correct? Can you learn more from a character who is flawed, racist, or malevolent? Or is that saturating the market with a poisonous worldview?
What is #REALYA? What do kids actually experience – from all walks of life? Does censoring books mean sacrificing the reality of the teenage experience?
As kids grow up, when do they get the right to read what they want to? How much control over content is beneficial, and how much is harmful?
Censorship sucks. If we’re given the autonomy to decide for ourselves – and I did self-filter as a kid – we can learn and protect ourselves against destructive situations as shown through books. They build character.