Library displays formerly banned books

SOUTHWEST HARBOR — A display of banned books will be up through Oct. 9 at the Southwest Harbor Public Library to honor Banned Books Week.

Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Held annually during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers and readers of all types in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

The library celebrates this event every year with a different display. This year, the library has chosen to highlight 12 books. Each book is displayed with a brief description that explains how and why particular classic books came to be challenged or banned.

“Some of these explanations may surprise you,” said library Director Candy Emlen. “It’s hard to believe this type of censorship is still happening today.”

In addition to these brief case histories, the library is also displaying a “grab bowl” of loose quotes, powerful statements on the subject of free speech, banned books and the First Amendment. From Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine to Justices Louis Brandeis and Thurgood Marshall to Presidents Dwight Eisenhower and Lyndon Johnson, many luminaries have weighed in on one of our democracy’s most sacred rights. Reach in to our bowl of great quotations and discover just how important it is to be able to choose freely what we want to read.

Call the library at 244-7065.


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