Celebrating Banned Books Week Celebrating Banned Books Week

Shining a light on censorship

By Matthew Sullivan SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) — Banned books week is underway at Soule Branch public library. This year’s theme is “Shine a Light on Censorship.”

Banned books week was an American campaign established in 1982 by a prominent First Amendment activist after a slew of books were banned nationwide that year. Onodaga county’s Banned Books Week competition has been going on for three years.

Soule Branch library won the competition the first year and look to do so again this year.. Library assistants Amy Bader and Adriana Sotolongo work together to build the display year after year.

This year’s display is different than any before though. It is the first interactive display they have built that teaches you about why these books have been banned.

At first glance the display looks ordinary but after you use the blacklight flashlights offered it changes the entire display. By shining the flashlights on the small yellow boxes above the books you are able to see invisible ink which explains why the books have been banned. These range from books banned in just schools to even some public libraries.

The official theme for this year’s nationwide Banned Book Week is “Censorship leaves us in the dark, keep the light on;” but the library assistants at Soule Branch wanted to put their own touch on it. They came up with “Shine a Light on Censorship.”



The library assistants said it’s very important to celebrate Banned Books Week because it goes against the First Amendment. Most books, according to the assistants, have been banned for “laughable” reasons and they deserved to still be read.

Going on the third year of celebration Soule Branch library has never had someone oppose Banned Books Week. However, if you are someone that believes certain books should be censored you can head over to the library and fill out a ban request form. There’s no guarantee, but it will be reviewed by the county.

There’s still time to check out the interactive display at Soule Branch library. Banned Books Week officialy runs until September 28th but Soule Branch will be leaving the display open for over another month.

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