Watch Gene Luen Yang in Conversation with the National Council of Teachers of English

As part of this year’s Banned Books Week, the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) hosted a live conversation with comics creator Gene Luen Yang. If you missed the event, don’t worry, you can find the whole event on NCTE’s Facebook page here. Moderated by Lisa Fink and CBLDF’s education coordinator, Karen Evans, the conversation also included panelists Jung Kim and Cody Miller.

The panel covered such topics as the power of satire, the importance of comics in the teaching curriculum, using comics to teach abstract and difficult concepts, and comics as an outsider or subversive medium. The conversation wrapped up with a Q&A with the audience and NCTE’s signature “Build Your Stacks,” a roundtable of comics and graphic novel recommendations.

Banned Books Week will be continuing throughout the week. Follow the events on social media and find ways you can celebrate and participate throughout the week.

Gene Luen Yang writes, and sometimes draws, comic books and graphic novels. As the Library of Congress’ fifth National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, he advocates for the importance of reading, especially reading diversely. American Born Chinese, his first graphic novel from First Second Books, was a National Book Award finalist, as well as the winner of the Printz Award and an Eisner Award. His two-volume graphic novel Boxers & Saints won the L.A. Times Book Prize and was a National Book Award Finalist. His other works include Secret Coders (with Mike Holmes), The Shadow Hero (with Sonny Liew), New Super-Man from DC Comics (with various artists), and the Avatar: The Last Airbender series from Dark Horse Comics (with Gurihiru). In 2016, he was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow, and he is a former National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature with the Library of Congress.

About NCTE

The National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) supports teachers and their students in classrooms, on college campuses, and in online learning environments. For more than 100 years, NCTE has worked with its members to offer journals, publications, and resources; to further the voice and expertise of educators as advocates for their students at the local and federal levels; and to share lesson ideas, research, and teaching strategies through its Annual Convention and other professional learning events.

About the Banned Books Week Coalition

The Banned Books Week Coalition is an international alliance of diverse organizations joined by a commitment to increase awareness of the annual celebration of the freedom to read. The Coalition seeks to engage various communities and inspire participation in Banned Books Week through education, advocacy, and the creation of programming about the problem of book censorship. 

The Banned Books Week Coalition includes American Booksellers Association; American Library Association; American Society of Journalists and Authors; Association of University Presses; Authors Guild; Comic Book Legal Defense Fund; Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE); Freedom to Read Foundation; Index on Censorship; National Coalition Against Censorship; National Council of Teachers of English; PEN America; People For the American Way Foundation; and Project Censored. It is endorsed by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. Banned Books Week also receives generous support from DKT Liberty Project and Penguin Random House.