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Banning Books In Schools Essay

1102 words - 5 pages

The practice of the censorship of books in schools has been prevalent due to the explicit content. Parents have been complaining to schools about books that count as required reading because they disapprove with the points made in the book. If a book consists of offensive or sexually explicit material, parents challenge the schools in order to prevent their children from reading them. Censorship in general has been an intensely debated issue because it is considered an infringement of the First Amendment of the United States Constitution while others argue it is used to conceal inappropriate material (Aliprandini and Sprague). The banning of books in the school curriculum has also been ...view middle of the document...

One counterpoint of the argument is that banning books hinders students from discovering new things and obtaining knowledge. According to the article, “Banning Books: An Overview”, Michael Aliprandini and Carolyn Sprague state, “The core arguments against the banning of books have been based on protecting the rights of individuals to free speech as well as to promote intellectual freedom – the rights protected by the First Amendment” (Aliprandini and Sprague). They are basically explaining how the arguments of book banning connect to the idea of intellectual freedom and protecting individual rights, which are implied in the First Amendment. Censorship of books can be expressed as violating the rights and freedom of the individuals. Boyd and Bailey support this idea of intellectual freedom by presenting how banning books in schools with the quote from their journal, “Censors evoke barriers to free thought and speech when they block knowledge acquisition, intellectual development, as well as creative and critical thinking…” (Boyd and Bailey 655). In other words, students will not be able to develop the academic skills they need in order to succeed in school if books are banned for them. Nonetheless, there have been books banned from the school curriculum because of the complaints of parents.
An example of a book that has been banned in schools, and actually burned because it consisted information about homosexuality, is Briar Rose by Jane Yolen, a book about the Holocaust (Boyd and Bailey 656). During the Holocaust, Jews were not the only individuals to be murdered and abused: the disabled and homosexuals were also targeted: a point the novel focuses on. According to the Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, the book burners “denied young people access to information about the inhumane treatment of others and the horrific injustices that innocent people suffered at the hands of the Nazis” (Boyd and Bailey 656). In short, the people who burned the book did not want young readers to be exposed to the kind of torture the Nazis put the innocent victims through. In the article, Boyd and Bailey exclaim, “This omission is a longstanding form a censorship that blocks school children from a complete view of an important historical event.”, referring to the burning of the Briar Rose (Boyd and Bailey 656). The authors are supporting the idea that...

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