Arts & Literature Society to discuss book-banning Oct. 2

Melissa Laussmann

The Arts & Literature Society is raising awareness of censorship and banned books to students in honor of Banned Books Week which runs from Sept. 28 to Oct. 3.

The president of the Arts & Literature Society, Arielle Martin, marketing senior, wants people to know about the problem with censorship and book-banning even in this day and age of information overload.

“It’s become a tradition for the Arts & Literature Society to get involved with spreading awareness about banned books,” said Martin. “I’m hoping to create some enthusiasm and that our activities will create a ripple effect.”

Martin said the group plans to have a banned books discussion at Fuzzy’s Taco Shop on Oct. 2 at 5:30 p.m. The group will be reading and discussing books that have been banned through the ages.

“I was most surprised that the book Where the Wild Things Are was banned because it depicted childhood depression and some people didn’t want their children exposed to that,” Martin said.

Todd Giles, Arts & Literature Society faculty adviser, said book banning is still a problem in America.

“Nearly every week in America parents or religious organizations attempt to ban a book from school libraries and curricula,” Giles said.

Censorship sometimes comes from fear or lack of knowledge or possibly a desire to maintain the status quo.

“Trying to stifle freedom of speech goes against our rights as American citizens to engage in freedom of speech,” said Giles. “These student-led initiatives are great for raising awareness of the problematic nature of censorship,” he added.

The Arts & Literature Society’s campus representative, Kevin Ruddy, senior in English, said “There’s still stuff being censored out today, like the book Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss. There should be liberty and freedom of expression in the arts, literature and film,” he added.

Ruddy said that although he believes there is a lesser degree of book-banning today, it remains a problem in America.