#USIbannedbooks

Ariana Beedie

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Ashley Clark’s favorite banned book is “Farenheight 451” by Ray Bradbury.

“I think it’s hilarious that people tried to ban a book about reading,” she said. “It’s a very anti-banned books book.”

Clark, the university’s new instructional librarian is bringing new fresh events to the table for Banned Books Week, a national event celebrating the legacy of banned books, Sept. 22 through the 28th.

A series of different events are taking place during that week such as a Virtual Read Out, and photo opportunities with a favorite banned book.

“We’re going to have a virtual read out, where people read from their favorite book,” she said. “To celebrate the books, the reasons why they’re banned and the fact that the library owns them.”

The videos will be posted to Rice Libraries You Tube and Facebook pages.

“If anyone takes a picture of themselves reading a banned book somewhere silly, they can put a hash tag and post it to Instagram,” Clark said.

Just about any place works for a photo with a banned book, except for the bathroom, she said.

This is the first year the library has done an event this interactive. In previous years, Rice Library had displays and bulletin boards dedicated to the event. Last year there was a traveling display of a dramatic scene showing book burning in the World War II.

Jennifer Greene, Reference and Archives Librarian, said banning books goes back to the Middle Ages.

“I think every generation is surprised at the books that previous generations didn’t want them to read,” she said. “The freedom they have to see the things they see today has not always been the case.”

Library staff is prepared for students and faculty to participate in these events, they are also excited, she said.

This is the first year the library has done an event this interactive. In previous years, Rice Library had displays and bulletin boards dedicated to the event. Last year there was a traveling display of a dramatic scene showing book burning in the World War II.

“It’ s just in the last couple years that we tried to be really interactive with the students,” Greene said. “This year we really want to reach out to the student body.”

Not many students are aware that there’s a national banned books event, but some have strong opinions on the subject.

Ariel Hairston, a senior history major, said banning books isn’t a good idea.

“You’re taking world perspectives away from children,” she said. “If you can’t be exposed to everything, they’re not going to get a real education.”

 

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