One of inspirations I had for starting this book blog was hearing Lauren Myracle speak about her books and the censorship she's faced. I think that freedom of press and freedom of speech issues are fascinating. I teach poli sci at the college level and over the years, the section on civil liberties has become one of my favorites. Books and constitutional law, what's not to like?
On the surface, the 1st Amendment looks pretty forthright:
"Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or..."
But as we know, it gets so much more complicated than that. So Congress can't pass a law, but what about when your local school district pulls a book from the middle school library? Or a private company is putting pressure on an author to change content in his book? These other ways hurt too, and there aren't easy answers.
Banned book week is at the end of September, and today I stumbled across a blogger challenge about banned books. Here's Steph Su's post about the challenge. The challenge runs from September 1 until October 15. My goal for the challenge is to read seven banned or challenged books, approximately one per week, and to reflect on the book and why it was banned. I'm not sure which books I'll pick up, but I will have a post about one soon.