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The 50 Most Banned Books in America

During the 2021-2022 school year, more than 1,600 books were banned from school libraries. The bans affected 138 school districts in 32 states, according to a report from PEN America, an organization dedicated to protecting free expression in literature. And the number of bans are only increasing yearly. Read more

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Judge Tosses Virginia Obscenity Cases, Declares State Law Unconstitutional

In a resounding victory for the freedom to read, a Virginia state judge on August 30 swiftly dismissed two closely-watched cases that sought to bar the public display and sale of two books alleged to be obscene under an obscure state law. Furthermore, in dismissing the cases the court struck down the Virginia law upon which the cases were brought, finding it unconstitutional. Read more

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The Cruel Practice of Banning Books Behind Bars

Across the United States, agencies have issued an ever-evolving list of restrictions on what people in prison can read. Works by Black authors, civil rights literature, critiques of mass incarceration, books in languages other than English—all are frequently censored. (Meanwhile, Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf and books by David Duke have been allowed in some of those same prisons.) Read more

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School Board in Tennessee Bans Teaching of Holocaust Novel ‘Maus’

A school board in Tennessee voted unanimously this month to ban “Maus,” a Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel about the Holocaust, from being taught in its classrooms because the book contains material that board members said was inappropriate for students. Read more

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