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Banned Books Display Ideas for Libraries

Updated on May 3, 2015

Ideas for Banned Book Week

Bringing attention to censorship and promoting the right to read is an important function for libraries and librarians. Creating a display for the annual Banned Books Week is one way to raise public awareness of the the importance of the freedom to read.

Here are examples of displays from libraries across the country. Hopefully they will inspire you to make a great eye-opening display for your own library. Little by little we raise public awareness of how wrong it is to ban books.

Show your awareness and support for Freedom to Read with a shirt like this one from Zazzle: I read banned books! T-shirt by kithseer

Be Sure Your Display Is Clear

A friend posted this photo on Facebook which started a number of people questioning the reason for that library banning Harry Potter. This is a common issue with banned book week displays.

The person viewing the display may mistakenly think that the library is promoting the banning of books. Keep this in mind. Make your display eye-catching, but include an explanation about the importance of the freedom to read.

(Thank you, Pat Thompson, for taking this photo and sharing it with me)

Are You Planning a Display to Raise Awareness of Banned Books Week?

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Libraries Get Creative with Videos Explaining Banned Books Week

Ideas for Banned Book Displays

We Are Banned Books
Display of books wrapped in brown paper
Write the description on the cover for the reason it was banned.
Think for Yourself & Let Others Do the Same
Book display with yellow police tape
Crisscross the caution tape in front of the books.
Book display with large red circle with the red slash across the center
Ideas for Library or School Displays for Banned Book Week

Get Great Book Display Ideas on Pinterest

I created a pinboard to save the great ideas I was finding on Pinterest and other places online. There are lots of librarians there that you can follow.
I created a pinboard to save the great ideas I was finding on Pinterest and other places online. There are lots of librarians there that you can follow. | Source

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Banned Books Affected My Library Career

In the last 10 years of my library career, I was a library director. The position that I filled was vacant because the librarian was fired over a book censorship issue. The book that people didn't think should be on the shelves was Howard Stearns' Private Parts.

The position wasn't filled for many months as the city council waited for the dust to settle and to see how the lawsuit turned out. After that, they had few applicants brave enough to apply for the job.

I was ready for a career move, so crossed my fingers and applied. After interviews with three panels, I was hired but I think they had some reservations about me. I asserted that I would support Intellectual Freedom and the Right to Read. That made them nervous, but hired me anyway.

A Great Poster Listing Banned Books


A poster available from Zazzle: READ BANNED BOOKS POSTERS by friendlyspirit

© 2013 Virginia Allain

What Are Your Feelings about Book Banning?

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    • Pawpawwrites profile image

      Jim 2 years ago from Kansas

      Banning things can become a slippery slope. I don't want somebody else to decide for me what I can read, and what I can't. Thanks for bringing it to our attention, in a very creative way.

    • SBPI Inc profile image

      SBPI Inc 4 years ago

      Just Because. Banning anything absolutest sets me off. lol I am seriously considering opening a specialty library just for banned books now.

      Great lens.

    • patinkc profile image

      patinkc 4 years ago from Midwest

      Thanks for creating this page!