Friday, September 30, 2011

Happy Banned Book Week

In honor of BANNED BOOKS WEEK in the US, I want to share a little about all the BANNED BOOKS I have read with my students in the last year PLUS all the ones I intend to read with my students in the coming year. 


Before I do, I want to say how thankful I am that I am living and teaching in a country that does not censor the literature that educators choose to use in their classrooms. I never realized how FREEING this concept was until I was able to actually experience it myself upon moving to Denmark. 


I LOVE BOOKS and I LOVE TO READ. Ask my parents how many times I was scolded for reading at the dinner table, reading after "lights out" in my room, reading in church when I was supposed to be listening to the sermon, etc, etc... In fact (although my mom denies it), I was actually grounded once from books (they wanted to get me where it hurt! LOL!


The fact that we even have a BANNED BOOKS WEEK in the US is a statement that says so many things... so many very sad things....things that break my heart.


Censoring and/or banning books in public schools means that there will be adults who have never met folks like Celie, Huck Finn, Billy Pilgrim or Jay Gatsby . And that bothers me.









So what FORBIDDEN literature are the students in Kelli Nørgaard's English classes exposed to? Here are just a few..... 




When students leave my class, they will leave with so many new acquaintances than they had before they entered. They will have cheered on folks like Ma and Tom Joad while they became exasperated with Holden Caufield. But they will also strive to do the right thing just like Atticus Finch taught them. They will remember the friendship of George and Lennie and the leadership efforts of Ralph and Jack.... but most importantly they will KNOW that literature can truly change them as people.... 

Books add so much to our lives.
And I hope and pray that someday teachers in the US can experience the freedoms that we are blessed with in Denmark. 

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

I read all the books that you have icons for in English class in US between 8th and 11th grade (except for Lord of the Flies which I never read in or out of school). To Kill a Mockingbird was definitely my favorite. I believe there is a film version for most of these, which we typically saw in class after we finished the book.

I read Lady Chatterley's Lover because I heard it was once banned in US (but not in UK).

May said...

I am trying to figure out why "Catcher in the Rye" is banned, but I am stumped. Is it because of the language?

ladyfi said...

These books are banned in the US? Buy why? Most of these are staples in British schools.

Mads and Kelli said...

Note: Many of these ARE read in US schools, but often it is AFTER you have received SIGNED parent permission slips .... it is a joke.

And here is a link from the American Library association where you can see ALL the banned classics and "reasons" why...
again.. a joke.
http://www.ala.org/ala/issuesadvocacy/banned/frequentlychallenged/challengedclassics/reasonsbanned/index.cfm

Megan said...

banned books???? i have never heard of such a thing!!!!! i read most of those...is this new?! it sounds ridiculous!

Lisa said...

I read every one of these books in California public school. Granted it was some time ago and the banning of books goes in cycles.

Lindsay said...

I have never heard of this either! It sounds crazy!