“Fun Home” raises concerns

Students usually associate bans and challenges within a k-12 education setting. However, that’s not always the case. In 2015 a Duke university  freshmen expressed concern over the summer reading selection of “Fun Home” by Alison Bechdel.

The award winning graphic novel deals with the death of a closeted parent and the authors lesbianism ( Burr,Triggering).

To see the letter concerning the book that the freshman published see:

Freshmen skipping ‘Fun Home’ for moral reasons

Duke students reject award-winning book over gay themes


Works Cited:

Burr, Ty. “Triggering a Call for Debate on Campus.” Boston GlobeAug 30 2015. ProQuest. Web. 21 Aug. 2017


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A book about penguins tops the banned list

Penguins can cause controversy.  The book “And Tango Makes Three” is about penguins in the Central Park Zoo. It was also the “American Library Associations Most Challenged in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2010.  It has been challenged in public schools libraries, and in some cases, removed or placed on a restricted shelf” ( Scales 136).

What is it about this book that makes it so controversial? The penguins in the story, Roy and Silo,  are two males and together they hatch and raise a baby penguin named Tango. Parents objected to same sex penguin couple. For more information see the following stories:

A Baby for the Gay Authors Behind the Daddy Penguins


Remember the last CMS book controversy? Here’s what it tells us about the latest


Works Cited:

Scales, Pat R. Books Under Fire: A Hit List of Banned and Challenged Children’s Books. Chicago: ALA Editions, An imprint of the American Library Association, 2015. Print


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6th Annual Banned Books Read Out


Yesterday was the Gingrich Library’s 6th Annual Banned Books Read Out. Soft pretzels were on hand to eat while listening to readers.Thank you to all who participated! Excerpts were read from the following banned/challenged books:

” The Handmaiden’s Tale” by Margaret Atwood

” Where the Sidewalk Ends” by Shel Silverstein

” The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas

” Fahrenheit 451″ by Ray Bradbury

” I am Jazz” by Jazz Jennings

” The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time” by Mark Haddon

” Nasreen’s Secret School” by Jeanette Winter

For pictures from the event see the Gingrich Library’s Instagram Page at :  https://www.instagram.com/albrightlibrary/




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A “Dirty Cowboy” gets a bath and then gets banned

Sometimes even children’s picture books can be subject to a challenge or ban. This was the case with the book ” The Dirty Cowboy” by Amy Timberlake.

” The Dirty Cowboy” is the story of a cowboy who decides he needs a bath. After bathing the cowboy’s dog does not recognize him. The dog known as Dawg refues to give the cowboy back his clothes. This forces the now naked cowboy to chase dawg around. While the cowboy is naked for most of the book his nakedness is disguised by cleverly placed objects.

According to the book ” Books Under Fire” the ” book was removed from the library at the W.C. Andrews Primary School in Portland, Texas, because the principal ” didn’t want the book in the library”( Scales 172). Locally the book was removed by a vote of 8-0 from the Annville-Cleona School District ( Scales 172).

For more information please see : Scales, Pat R. Books Under Fire: A Hit List of Banned and Challenged Children’s Books. Chicago: ALA Editions, An imprint of the American Library Association, 2015. Print. 

Also see :

‘The Dirty Cowboy’ mess is about a lot more than one book


Annville-Cleona School Board stays strong on decision to ban ‘The Dirty Cowboy’

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Why are books banned/challenged??

People often wonder on what grounds people  attempt to ban or challenge a book. There are many reasons. The ALA OIF has compiled an infographic that illustrates the different reasons. The most popular among them is ” sexually explicit”. Seven of the books on the ALA list of top ten banned/challenged books of 2016 were banned/challenged for that vague reason. For more information about banned books visit the ALA’s website.

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