So I've mentioned before that The Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison is one of the three books I have started and not finished. (I talk about the third one here if you're curious.) Although I am trying to continue with my new-found acceptance of not finishing a crappy book, I have also intended to go back and read The Invisible Man. This has not been at the top of my priority list though, I must admit, but seeing all the buzz about the best of the National Book Award winners is making me feel guilty. I was contemplating pulling it out this weekend, when I read about Saturday kicking off National Banned Books week. And there it was, glaring at me from the list. So I may just have to give it a shot this week. They had a full list of the most frequently banned/challenged classics. It's a list of the top 100 books of the 20th century, with the ones that have been challenged/banned in bold. Where would you guess most of the challenges to come from? Check out this map of challenges. Is it those crazy Bible belt people? Nope. Almost all of the challenges come from somewhere along the east coast. There's also a big concentration around Wisconsin/Michigan/Chicago. Perhaps this is partly because the Bible belt schools aren't as likely to put pro-homosexual books in the kids section in the first place, but there are also a lot of challenges on the coast due to racial and homosexual slang terms. The conservatives are challenges And Tango Makes Three. The liberals are challenging Huck Finn. Really? And we're the ones who are trying to censor everything? Grrr.
Anyway, look for some appreciation for banned books this next week! And maybe go to the library and check one out for yourself!