East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

Banned Books Week


And I just found out that today is the start of the Banned Books Week (BBW).
From the initiative’s web page:

BBW-logo-1024x754Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community — librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types — in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.

And I thought, why not?
I’ve been a reader since I was six and I learned how to read – and before that, my mother used to read to me.
I met a lot of great people in these fifty-one years I’ve spent on the planet, but books are what made me.
Movies and records and late dinners and long walks under the rain, too, sure, but first and foremost, books.
I still judge people by the books on their shelves.
It’s bad, and unfair, but I seldom get them wrong.

Again from the website

Banned Books Week 2018 will be held September 23 – 29. The 2018 theme, “Banning Books Silences Stories,” is a reminder that everyone needs to speak out against the tide of censorship.

Visit their website.
There is also a map of all the events planned for this week. And it was the map that got me thinking about doing something, here on Karavansara.

Screenshot from 2018-09-23 17-17-09

Will I find something interesting to write about?
I think I will.
And I’m open to suggestions.
Is there some unspeakable book we need to talk about?

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

11 thoughts on “Banned Books Week

  1. You know, “unpopular and unorthodox ideas” brings back memories a bunch of John Brockman non-fiction titles, like “What Is Your Dangerous Idea?” or “This Idea Must Die”. This to say that if we look in an banned books, is unevenly distributed toward the non-fiction (Damn, one time I could use “sperequato” and I discover that english language don’t have a direct translation!), could be interesting checks an Index Librorum Prohibitorum and see what books were present when you were a six old kid.
    Oh yes, the question: In the wide world of speculative fiction, I’ve never seen someone talk about “The Glass Bead Game” by Herman Hesse (I wonder how many people have read it, after all we can’t talk about an unread book), despite it was considered unspeakable just by the Nazis


    • I will make some inquiries.
      And yes, Hesse seems to have been mummified by the success of Siddhartha and a few other very thin books of his.
      Being considered unspeakable by the Nazis, on the other hand, is quite a nice review…


  2. I apologize for the numerous mistakes and oversights.
    I remember a Spanish Index Librorum Prohibitorum “published” in the 200os, there was even Edwin Abbott Abbott, Isaac Asimov and Arturo Pérez-Reverte. I don’t know if I can find it again and honestly I hope I didn’t find a faux.


      • Found it. I have indeed used a poor and foolish choice of words. It wasn’t an “Index Librorum Prohibitorum”, but a list of not recommended reading presented by Opus Dei in 2003. I will not insert a link ’cause I remember your link policy and because, principally, you never did request for it. I’m not interested to leave something unsolicited


  3. https:// demasiadoqueleer.files.wordpress . com/2010/03/index_2003-opus-dei1.pdf

    I placed some space in the link, I hope this will help to keep WP and Google quiet.


    • Wow!
      “Only” 554 pages of books… some people don’t know how to have fun.


      • Find out that someone somewhere has needed a special permission to read “Quer pasticciaccio brutto de Via Merulana” or he’s prohibited from reading some Patricia Highsmith’s mystery novels is one of the most sad and laughable information I had in the last weeks.
        It’s like returning to be an italian teenager during the 1970s, that if he wanted to read something like “I racconti di Dracula” he has to do in complete secret.


Leave a comment

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 )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.