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Freedom to Read Week

From February 20th to the 26th

Freedom to Read Week is an annual event that encourages Canadians to think about and reaffirm their commitment to intellectual freedom, which is guaranteed them under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Freedom to Read Week is organized by the Book and Periodical Council.

Despite having strong traditions of free expression and free inquiry, Canada also has a long-standing tradition of censorship. Historically, books and magazines have often been quietly removed from libraries and classrooms. Freedom to Read Week was founded in 1984 to challenge the covert nature of censorship, creating a broader awareness of these ongoing challenges to Canadian writing, and to allow Canadians to actively defend their right to publish, read and write freely and to widen their understanding of the negative effects of censorship, not just on readers but on writers and publishers as well.

“Freedom to Read Week.” Freedom to Read, 9 Jan. 2022, https://www.freedomtoread.ca/freedom-to-read-week/.

It may be difficult to believe but even in Canada, a free country by world standards, books and magazines are sometimes banned at our borders. Schools, as well as public libraries, are often asked to remove books from their collections from clients who feel the subject matter or even images are inappropriate. This happens even in 2022. Our goal in promoting Freedom to Read Week is to educate our clients on the importance of keeping banned books on our shelves and encourage you, the reader, to borrow books from the banned book lists and decide for yourself.

There are several books, from banned book lists, displayed at the Rockland branch, so please stop by and borrow one for yourself and your family. It’s important we keep our Freedom to Read alive!

Here are some links that will take you to interesting sites that discuss more about banned books.

Canadian Banned Books

Fraser Valley Regional Library

Penguin Random House

CBC

American Banned Books

Insider Magazine

Powells Bookstore

Please take the time to watch the video below as Pamela discusses certain books and why we should keep reading them, even if they are on banned book lists.

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