Banned Books Week (Sept 27-Oct 3) is an annual event that denounces censorship, supports intellectual curiosity, and endorses the freedom to read. It is a time to celebrate diversity of thought and opinion — even if such ideas happen to be unpopular or contrary to our own.
Consider this quote from John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty:
But the peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error.
So we highlight certain texts that, for whatever reason, have been challenged or banned throughout the years. We do this as an important reminder that the fight for open access and freedom of thought continues to this day.
Come exercise your right to read here at the Spangler Library!