10 books that have been banned in schools

catcher in the rye

  • Classic books and contemporary young adult novels have been banned in schools.
  • Language, sexual content, and even „Satanic“ themes have all been the subject of complaints.
  • Some districts have allowed the books after pushback from students and faculty, though many remain blacklisted.

Both classic books and contemporary novels have been banned in schools due to „profanity,“ plotlines „centered around negative activity,“ „X-rated“ content, and „Satanic“ themes. While some books have been reinstated by school districts after pushback from students and faculty, others remain blacklisted.

The American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom tracks the number of complaints that books receive in schools, tallying up the most frequently challenged books since 1990, as well as classic books that were challenged and banned throughout the 20th century into today. 

Here are 10 beloved books that have been banned in schools and what made them so controversial.

„To Kill A Mockingbird“ by Harper Lee

„To Kill A Mockingbird“ has been challenged, removed from curricula, and banned in schools across the US due to its use of the N-word and other racial epithets that promote „racial hatred, racial division, [and] racial separation“ as well as „adult themes such as sexual intercourse, rape, and incest“ as Brentwood Middle School in Tennessee put it in 2006. 

Michael Cary, director of curriculum and instruction at Duluth Public Schools in Minnesotatold the Duluth News Tribune that, „We felt that we could still teach the same standards and expectations through other novels that didn’t require students to feel humiliated or marginalized by the use of racial slurs.“

It was also one of the 10 most challenged books in schools in 2017

„The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn“ by Mark Twain

Like „To Kill A Mockingbird,“ the book’s language and depiction of African Americans has been controversial in schools. Bans on the book date back to one year after it was published, when it was called „trash and suitable only for the slums“ in 1885. 

The „Harry Potter“ series by J.K. Rowling

„Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone“ made the list of the most challenged books in the 1990s even though the first book was only published in the US in 1999. Books from the series were also the most challenged books in the following decade, with complaints that they were anti-family,“ violent, and Satanic. 


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Source: Business insider

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