Statute of Liberty reading a book

Banned Books Week (BBW) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment. Held during the last week of September, Banned Books Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted bannings of books across the United States.

Intellectual freedom - the freedom to access information and express ideas, even if the information and ideas might be considered unorthodox or unpopular - provides the foundation for Banned Books Week.

A series of Virtual Exhibits listed in the right hand navigation bar, highlight books that have been been targets of attempted banning. Fortunately, while some books were banned or restricted, in a majority of cases the books were not banned, all thanks to the efforts of librarians, teachers, booksellers, and members of the community who fought against the restraints imposed on the availability of information in a free society.

Share your Voice »

Below are authors of banned and challenged books speaking out about their experiences and calling attention to censorship. Add your voice to the conversation by participating in our virtual read-out. Find out how to submit your video »