For Pride this month, we wanted to share our resource — Overcoming Identity Censorship. Identity censorship is when a work is challenged based on the identity of the author or the subject matter of the book. LGBTQ+ content is the most frequent target of identity censorship, including eight of the ten most challenged books of 2019.
This past year we have continued to see challenges brought before library and school boards asking them to remove books because of the identities represented. We recently saw this in Georgia with Drama and in North Carolina with One of a Kind, Like Me. This month alone, we have seen multiple librarians stepping forward to defend their Pride displays.
Our one-sheet Overcoming Identity Censorship is a quick guide to help you identify and defend challenged material. The one-sheet is in an easy-to-read format with all the tips and information you need. You can download it below!
Overcoming Identity Censorship PDF
Below is a collection of additional resources, including case studies, adding graphic novels to your collection, using graphic novels in education, and discussion guides.
Each of the works below has been targeted in the past for the identity of the characters or the creators. These resources are designed to help use the material effectively in the classroom, increase community understanding of the material, and grant strategies for defending them in the event of a challenge.
The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is here to defend your First Amendment rights. If you face censorship or would like to report censorship in the comics community, reach out to us for assistance at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CBLDF Banned Books Case Studies
Check out the CBLDF Banned Books Case Studies that focus on books targeted by identity censorship. Learn why they were censored and what steps were taken to keep them on the shelves!
Banned Books Case Study: Drama
Banned Books Case Study: Fun Home
Banned Books Case Study: Sandman
Banned Books Case Study: Stuck Rubber Baby
Banned Books Case Study: That One Summer
Adding Graphic Novels to Your Classroom
Adding Graphic Novels to Your Classroom is an ongoing feature from CBLDF that provides specific resources for librarians and educators who may need to justify and defend the inclusion of the book in library and classroom collections.
Adding Drama to Your Collection
Adding Fun Home to Your Collection
Adding Lumberjanes to Your Collection
Adding My Brothers Husband to Your Collection
Adding This One Summer to Your Collection
Using Graphic Novels in Education
Using Graphic Novels in Education is an ongoing feature from CBLDF that is designed to assuage confusion around the content of graphic novels and to help parents and teachers raise readers.
Using Graphic Novels: American Born Chinese
Using Graphic Novels: Aya: Life in Yop City
Using Graphic Novels: Lumberjanes
Using Graphic Novels: Ms. Marvel
Using Graphic Novels: That One Summer
CBLDF Discussion Guides are tools that can be used to lead conversations about challenged graphic novels and to help allay misconceptions about comics.
Fun Home CBLDF Discussion Guide