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Banned and Challenged Books: Research Guide

Logo for Banned Books Week

Banned Books Week is Sept. 22-28. It is an opportunity to learn about and discuss censorship and First Amendment issues. There are several ways to get involved. Encourage discussion about censorship amongst your friends and colleagues. Write a letter to the editor of your community newspaper. Attend BBW events in your community and look for exhibits and displays in local libraries.

Books about censorship:

Banned vs. Challenged

The American Library Association defines a challenge as "an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group." Banned books, on the other hand, have actually been removed from a school's curriculum or from a library.

Books are banned or challenged for a variety of reasons including: gambling, offensive language, political viewpoints, unsuited for age group, nudity, homosexuality, drugs/alcohol/smoking, sex education, racially or socially offensive and controversial issues.


CPTC Policies

The following are excerpts from CPTC Procedure: Library Services - Collection Development and Acquisitions

General Philosophy: Materials for the library are selected and acquired based on their relevance to program curricula, the needs of faculty and students, date of publication, and diversity of format. The selection of materials should insure a comprehensive collection consistent with the missions, strategic plans, goals, and objectives of the College and library. Priority is given to those materials relevant to the College’s curriculum and to the general reference works considered standard in small, academic libraries, as well as materials that foster intellectual curiosity and critical thinking. After the priority needs have been met, consideration is given to other desirable materials that give balance to the collection and meet the leisure, recreational, continuing education, and personal development needs of the students, faculty, and staff.

Requests for Reconsideration: The library does not add or withdraw, at the request of any individual or group, materials which have been chosen or excluded on the basis of stated selection criteria. An individual or group questioning the appropriateness of material within the collection will be referred to the Library Services Director. An individual may register a complaint concerning material that he or she considers objectionable by completing the “Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials” form shown in Appendix C. Any complaint from a Library patron concerning an item will be handled using the procedures outlined in Appendix B. CPTC Library subscribes to the American Library Association’s “Library Bill of Rights” and the “Freedom to Read Statement.” 

Click this link to download the Collection Development Request Form.


Top 11 Most Challenged Books for 2018