Blog Archives

Barefoot Gen Translator Disinvited from Speaking at Japanese School

October 9, 2013
By
Barefoot Gen Translator Disinvited from Speaking at Japanese School

A little more than a month after Keiji Nakazawa’s manga classic Barefoot Gen was restored to school libraries in the Japanese city of Matsue, an English-language translator of the series has been abruptly disinvited from speaking at a junior high school in suburban Tokyo, 400 miles away. School officials there obliquely cite “recent circumstances” and…

Read more »

Banned Books Week Goes to College

September 27, 2013
By
Banned Books Week Goes to College

Hi, CBLDF fans! This week I’m taking a break from writing about censorship and free speech elsewhere to tell you how we recognize Banned Books Week in the university library where I’m a Reference librarian. Now in its 31st year, the annual celebration of the right to read is partly an awareness campaign, but also…

Read more »

Melinda Gebbie Discusses Lost Girls, Censorship at Edinburgh Book Fest

September 19, 2013
By
Melinda Gebbie Discusses Lost Girls, Censorship at Edinburgh Book Fest

Lost Girls, the unabashedly pornographic update on characters from children’s literature classics as imagined by Melinda Gebbie and Alan Moore, is without a doubt one of the most provocative graphic novels published in recent memory. In recounting the sexual awakenings of Wendy, Dorothy, and Alice, the book features incest, bestiality, a three-way tryst between the…

Read more »

Ten Years of CIPA: Free Speech and Library Internet Filters

September 16, 2013
By
Ten Years of CIPA: Free Speech and Library Internet Filters

The issue of Internet filtering in school and public libraries has been getting a lot of attention lately, as we mark ten years since the Children’s Internet Protection Act was instituted. Unfortunately, the news is not good: Filtering software remains largely ineffective, underblocking the content it’s actually intended to target while overblocking sites that should…

Read more »

Alabama Lawmaker, Board of Ed Members Call for Ban on Bluest Eye

September 5, 2013
By
Alabama Lawmaker, Board of Ed Members Call for Ban on Bluest Eye

Only a few months after Toni Morrison’s novel The Bluest Eye was challenged in an Adams County, Colorado, school district, an Alabama state senator is calling the book “just completely objectionable” and says that it should be removed from classrooms and school libraries. Sen. Bill Holtzclaw (R-Madison) called for the ban last week, citing references…

Read more »

Libraries Remind Parents of Responsibilities

August 29, 2013
By
Libraries Remind Parents of Responsibilities

Frequently, when a book or other material is targeted for removal from a public library, it’s because a minor managed to access something that does not meet the approval of his or her parents or guardians. Although most libraries do their utmost to make clear that it’s not the responsibility of their staff to police…

Read more »

Barefoot Gen Pulled from Matsue School Libraries

August 20, 2013
By
Barefoot Gen Pulled from Matsue School Libraries

Keiji Nakazawa’s internationally renowned manga Barefoot Gen, which depicts wartime atrocities from the perspective of the seven-year-old protagonist, has been pulled from primary and middle school libraries in the Japanese city of Matsue. Citing “portions that warrant consideration as appropriate reading material for children,” school officials have barred students from checking out the manga but…

Read more »

HarperCollins India and the Pixelated Penises

August 5, 2013
By
HarperCollins India and the Pixelated Penises

When Canadian comics artist Chester Brown’s graphic novel memoir Paying For It – about his encounters with 23 different prostitutes — was first published in 2011, it received generally favorable reviews and was widely applauded for its honesty. But in the upcoming edition to be released by HarperCollins India, nine of Brown’s close-up drawings of…

Read more »

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Removed From Queens Reading List

August 2, 2013
By
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian Removed From Queens Reading List

Sherman Alexie’s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which CBLDF has defended from challenges in the past, was apparently removed from a sixth-grade reading list in Queens, New York, earlier this week after complaints from parents. Unfortunately the few news sources that have reported on the case are biased and provide scant information,…

Read more »

Adult Anxieties Over Young Adult Fiction Endure

July 24, 2013
By
Adult Anxieties Over Young Adult Fiction Endure

Every once in a while, some blogger or columnist garners a lot of pageviews by rekindling the simmering debate as to whether Young Adult fiction has become “too dark.” Two years ago, for example, this hand-wringing column from the Wall Street Journal inspired a Twitter backlash under the hashtag #YAsaves, where devoted readers testified to…

Read more »