Each year the American Library Association (ALA) puts out a list of books that have received the most challenges in the past year. The ALA defines a challenge as “an attempt to remove or restrict materials, based upon the objections of a person or group… Challenges do not simply involve a person expressing a point of view; rather, they are an attempt to remove material from the curriculum or library, thereby restricting access of others. As such, they are a threat to freedom of speech and choice.” In 2011, there were 326 book challenges sent to the ALA.
Here are the top 10 for 2011:
1. ttyl, ttfn and l8r, g8r a series by Lauren Myracle tells the story of three high school girls through their instant messages. It was number one in 2008 and 2009 but missed the list entirely last year. The books were challenged due to offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit and is unsuited to the age group.
2. The Color of Earth a graphic novel series by Kim Dong Hwa about the daughter of a single mother in Korea who owns a tavern was challenged because of nudity, sex education, sexually explicit and unsuited to the age group.
3. The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins made popular by the recent movie was challenged because it is thought to be anti-ethnic, anti-family, insensitive, has offensive language, occult/satanic and violence.
4. My Mom’s Having A Baby! A Kid’s Month-by-Month Guide to Pregnancy by Dori Hillestad Butler was published in 2005 but is making its debut on the list. It was challenged because it contains nudity, sex education, sexually explicit content and is unsuited to the age group.
5. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie dropped from number two on last year’s list. It was challenged because of offensive language, racism, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit and unsuited to the age group.
6. Alice is a series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor that follows a girl through her senior year of high school. It was challenged on the basis of nudity, offensive language and religious viewpoint.
7. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley dropped from third place last year. It was challenged because of insensitivity, nudity, racism, religious viewpoint and sexually explicit.
8.What My Mother Doesn’t Know by Sonya Sones is a book about a girl’s freshman year of highschool told in poetry. It was number seven on last year’s list and was challenged due to nudity, offensive language and sexually explicit.
9. Gossip Girl a series by Cecily Von Ziegesar was challenged because of drugs, offensive language and sexually explicit.
10. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee was challenged because of its offensive language and racism.