Each year, the American Library Association's Office for Intellectual Freedom compiles a list of the top ten books most frequently challenged as too offensive to appear in a public library. Below is the list for 2007.
For the curious, the ALA received a total of 420 challenges in '07; a challenge is defined as a formal, written complaint, filed with a library or school requesting that materials be removed because of content or appropriateness. The ALA doesn't claim comprehensiveness in recording challenges — research suggests that for each challenge reported there are as many as four or five which go unreported.
Personally, the inclusion of "...Huck Finn", "Caged Bird..." and "The Color Purple" gives me an uneasy sense that there's an undercurrent of racism in this list. That two Toni Morrison books are frequently included only reinforces that.
by Kevin Henkes
Included for the following reasons: "Sexually explicit and offensive language."
by Robie H. Harris, illustrated by Michael Emberley
Included for the following reason: "Sexually explicit."
by Mark Twain
Included for the following reason: "Racism."
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