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Virtual Book Display

Are you missing our traditional book displays celebrating the people and communities of W&M? Have no worries - we've moved them online!

Discussing Banned Books Week

The titles in this collection represent many of the most frequently challenged books in the last decade.

via the American Library Association: Banned Books Week (September 27 - October 3, 2020) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it spotlights current and historical attempts to censor books in libraries and schools. It brings together the entire book community — 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 books featured during Banned Books Week have all been targeted for removal or restriction in libraries and schools. By focusing on efforts across the country to remove or restrict access to books, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship.

Banned Books Available in Our Catalog


Reasons: sexually explicit, religious viewpoint, violence

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Brave New World

Reasons: insensitivity, nudity, racism, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit

The Glass Castle

Reasons: offensive language, sexually explicit

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Eleanor & Park

Reason: challenged for offensive language

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The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Reasons: sexual references, profanity, violence, gambling, and underage drinking, and for its religious viewpoint

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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Reasons: offensive language, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group, and other (“profanity and atheism”)

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Reasons: gambling, offensive language, political viewpoint. Additional reasons: “politically, racially, and socially offensive,” “graphic depictions”

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Nickel and Dimed: on (not) getting by in America

Reasons: drugs, inaccurate, offensive language, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint

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The Bluest Eye

Reasons: sexually explicit, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: “contains controversial issues”

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Bless me, Ultima

Reasons: occult/Satanism, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit

Fifty Shades of Grey

Reasons: nudity, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

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The Kite Runner

Reasons: sexual violence and was thought to “lead to terrorism” and “promote Islam.”

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Reasons: nudity, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group

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The Handmaid's Tale

Reasons: profanity and for “vulgarity and sexual overtones”

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The Hunger Games

Reasons: religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group

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This One Summer

Reasons: profanity, sexual references, and certain illustrations

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The Hate U Give

Reasons: considered “pervasively vulgar” and because of drug use, profanity, and offensive language

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Looking for Alaska

Reasons: challenged for a sexually explicit scene that may lead a student to “sexual experimentation”

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Reasons: anti-Family, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group

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The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, homosexuality, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: “date rape and masturbation”

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Reasons: LGBTQIA+ content and a transgender character; schools and libraries should not “put books in a child’s hand that require discussion”; for sexual references; and for conflicting with a religious viewpoint and “traditional family structure”

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A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo

Reasons: LGBTQIA+ content and political viewpoints, for concerns that it is “designed to pollute the morals of its readers,” and for not including a content warning

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And Tango Makes Three

Reasons: anti-family, homosexuality, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group. Additional reasons: “promotes the homosexual agenda”

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I am Jazz!

Reasons: LGBTQIA+ content, for a transgender character, and for confronting a topic that is “sensitive, controversial, and politically charged”

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Fun Home: a Family Tragicomic

Reasons: violence and other (“graphic images”)

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A Stolen Life

Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited for age group

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To Kill a Mockingbird

Reasons: offensive language, racism

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Reasons: religious viewpoint, violence