by Perry Stein
September 8, 2016
If you enter just the right business or library this month, you may
stumble upon a hidden book that was censored or challenged at one point.
And if you find it, it’s yours for the keeping.
The D.C. public
library system is hiding several hundred copies of books — which were
once banned or challenged — in private businesses throughout all eight
wards to celebrate Banned Books Week. The “UNCENSORED banned books”
scavenger hunt kicked off Sept. 6 and will run through the month.
book is wrapped in a cover that explains why that book was banned or
challenged. For example, J.D. Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye” will say
“Anti-White” because in 1963, parents of high school students in
Columbus, Ohio, asked the school board to ban the novel for being
Other challenged or banned books included in the scavenger hunt: “The
Color Purple,” “Slaughterhouse Five,” “A Separate Peace,” “One Flew
Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” and “Native Son.”
D.C. public libraries
will dole out clues about the books’ whereabouts on its social media
accounts throughout the month with the hashtag #UncensoredDC. People who
find a book are encouraged to post a picture of it on social media with
Winners at least 21 years old have a chance to win free tickets to
“UNCENSORED: The Cocktail Party” as part of a fundraiser for the D.C.
Public Library Foundation.
The city’s library system will host banned-book-related events at 25 neighborhood libraries throughout the month.
year’s theme is ‘Diversity,’ which will celebrate literature written by
diverse writers that has been banned or challenged, as well as explore
why diverse books are being disproportionately singled out,” the library
system wrote in a release explaining the festivities. “It’s estimated
that more than half of all banned books are by authors of color, or
contain events and issues concerning diverse communities, according to
the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom.”
Source: The Washington Post