The Ten Most Challenged Books of 2003

September 22, 2004

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(From the American Library Association)
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Banned Books Week
Sept. 25 to Oct. 2, 2004
American Civil Liberties Union

1. Alice series, by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, for sexual content, using offensive language, and being unsuited to age group.
2. Harry Potter series, by J.K. Rowling, for its focus on wizardry and magic.
3. Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck, for using offensive language.
4. Arming America: The Origins of a National Gun Culture, by Michael A. Bellesiles, for inaccuracy.
5. Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers, for racism, sexual content, offensive language, drugs and violence.
6. Go Ask Alice, by Anonymous, for drugs.
7. It's Perfectly Normal, by Robie Harris, for homosexuality, nudity, sexual content and sex education.
8. We All Fall Down, by Robert Cormier, for offensive language and sexual content.
9. King and King, by Linda de Haan, for homosexuality.
10. Bridge to Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson, for offensive language and occult/satanism.

Between 1990 and 2000, of the 6,364 challenges reported to or recorded by the Office for Intellectual Freedom:
1,607 were challenges to ""sexually explicit"" material (up 161 since 1999)
1,427 to material considered to use ""offensive language"" (up 165 since 1999)
 1,256 to material considered ""unsuited to age group"" (up 89 since 1999)
 842 to material with an ""occult theme or promoting the occult or Satanism"" (up 69 since 1999)
 737 to material considered to be ""violent"" (up 107 since 1999)
515 to material with a homosexual theme or ""promoting homosexuality"" (up 18 since 1999) and 419 to material ""promoting a religious viewpoint"" (up 22 since 1999)
Other reasons for challenges included ""nudity"" (317 challenges, up 20 since 1999), ""racism"" (267 challenges, up 22 since 1999), ""sex education"" (224 challenges, up 7 since 1999), and ""anti-family"" (202 challenges, up 9 since 1999).
Please note that the number of challenges and the number of reasons for those challenges do not match, because works are often challenged on more than one ground.

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