2022 set a record for attempts to censor books, American Library Association says

By Tom Maxedon
Published: Monday, October 2, 2023 - 8:59am

It’s Banned Books Week in the United States — an annual campaign conducted by the American Library Association to bring awareness about demands to censor library books and resources.

In 2022, “the organization’s Office for Intellectual Freedom documented 1,269 examples of such. That’s the highest number of attempted book bans since the ALA began compiling data about censorship in libraries more than 20 years ago,” according to a release.

Book titles challenged map
American Library Association's Office for Intellectual Freedom/2023
Book titles challenged between Jan. 1-Aug. 31, 2023.

“As a writer, am I naturally offended by it? Absolutely. But, it dawned on me in one moment that banning books is the greatest marketing scheme to get kids to read books,” said Arizona writer Carew Papritz, author of “The Legacy Letters.”

Carew said he’s especially dismayed that many of the demands recently have centered on books written by, or about, minority communities.

Check out the full conversation with him on the Oct., 17 episode of KJZZ's Word podcast about literature.

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