From Publishing Perspectives:
Last year saw 1,269 attempts to ban or restrict library materials in the United States, the highest level since the compiling of data began some 20 years ago, according to a new report from the American Library Association‘s watchdog agency on the issue.
The numbers make compelling reading, particularly in a week when effects similar to the wave of book bannings in the United States is echoed by a Wisconsin elementary school’s removal of a song from its spring concert because the Dolly Parton and Miley Cyrus duet “Rainbowland” could be, in the words of the school administration, “perceived as controversial.” Here is Harm Venhuizen’s write-up for the Associated Press.
The American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom tracks censorship demands made on libraries in the United States. The sheer magnitude of book challenges this office recorded in 2022 the growing threat of censorship in libraries.
. . . .
- A record 2,571 unique titles were targeted for censorship, according to the report, constituting a major, 38-percent jump in such activity over that seen in 2021.
- The 2022 number of reported book challenges relayed by the library association nearly doubles the 729 challenges reported in 2021.
- Some 58 percent of those reported book challenges were made to books and materials in school libraries, classroom libraries, or school curricula, according to the report.
. . . .
Organized censorship groups, the report indicates, are creating lists of books they want to see banned from libraries. The use of these lists, the Office for Intellectual Freedom points out, “contributed significantly to the skyrocketing number of challenges and the frequency with which each title was challenged.”
Prior to 2021, the agency says, “the vast majority of challenges to library resources only sought to remove or restrict access to a single book.” Now, 90 percent of challenges include multiple titles, contributing to the increased numbers the agency is reporting:
- 12 percent were in cases involving two to nine books
- 38 percent were in cases involving 10 to 99 books
- 40 percent were in cases involving 100 or more books
Link to the rest at Publishing Perspectives
These sorts of articles raise a question in PG’s mind: Do children’s book publishers really understand their market – parents of children?