Quotations on Book Banning




“I hate it that Americans are taught to fear some books and some ideas as though they were diseases.”

                                                                     Kurt Vonnegut




“Having the freedom to read and the freedom to choose is one of the best gifts my parents ever gave me.”

                                                                     Judy Blume




“Censorship and the suppression of reading materials are rarely about family values and almost always about controlabout who is snapping the whip, who is saying no, and who is saying go. Censorship’s bottom line is this: if the novel Christine offends me, I don’t want just to make sure it’s kept from my kid; I want to make sure it’s kept from your kid, as well, and all the kids. This bit of intellectual arrogance, undemocratic and as old as time, is best expressed this way: “If it’s bad for me and my family, it’s bad for everyone’s family.”

Yet when books are run out of school classrooms and even out of school libraries as a result of this idea, I’m never much disturbed not as a citizen, not as a writer, not even as a schoolteacher . . . which I used to be. What I tell kids is, Don’t get mad, get even. Don’t spend time waving signs or carrying petitions around the neighborhood. Instead, run, don’t walk, to the nearest nonschool library or to the local bookstore and get whatever it was that they banned. Read whatever they’re trying to keep out of your eyes and your brain, because that’s exactly what you need to know.”

                                                                                 Stephen King

21 thoughts on “Quotations on Book Banning

  1. Ahh, I think what Vonnegut is telling us is that ideas are contagious, and they’re spread by books.

    As was Judy Blume, I’m fortunate to have parents who gave me the freedom to read whatever I wanted when I was growing up.

    What I love about the Stephen King quote is the notion of kids becoming guerrilla fighters in the war against censorship by reading banned books.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. As you’ve shown in a previous post, many of the greatest books have been banned at some moment in time. Perhaps we, in part, fear that greatness. It makes little sense to me to ban a book that seeks to share a truth in some form, except for the fear of those that would control the masses. On a personal note, my own book for young adults has met with some controversy. On the cover, there is a hexagram, and one child mistook it for a pentagram ( I believe, I was not present) and asked the seller why she was selling a book with the mark of the devil on it! Goodness, that is quite the opposite effect that is intended, but it speaks to the fears and biases we have and pass down to our children. 😦

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Great quotes. It is a particularly dangerous time when we have not only the same old phobic bans from the right but a new generation on the left going after books like Huck Finn and To Kill a Mockingbird for being insufficiently woke. I never expected the religious right to change its stripes, but the rest of us need to stay vigilant.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I really love all the quotes you chose, Charles, but especially the one by King. I’ve always felt lucky that Germany isn’t that big in censoring books even for children. I can’t imagine what it would be like if it were.

    Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s