These sites are about books and censorship. You can find timelines and articles about the history of censorship, book burning, controversies, and First Amendment issues. There are lesson plan and classroom activity ideas as well as links to resources about banned books. Included are eThemes resources on the First Amendment and “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” one of the most frequently challenged books.
What is censorship? This page offers several definitions that students can discuss.
ALA: Banned Books Week
Since 1982, the last week in September has been observed as Banned Books Week. This page has information about Banned Books Week including posters, kits, quotations, and statistics. Find lists of the most frequently challenged books and authors and more.
Banned Books Online
This site has links to the full text of books and other speech that have been censored by governments, schools, and copyright holders.
When Books Burn
This online exhibit details the censorship and book burnings carried out by the Nazi party in Germany. It includes a timeline, lists of banned books and authors, speeches, and lesson plans.
BBC: Nazi Book Burning
Read this article about how contemporary Germans remember the books that were burned by the Nazis in 1933. There is an accompanying video.
The Censorship Connection
This is an article written by an author about having a visit to a school cancelled because of fear of a potential controversy.
"He who destroyes a good Booke"
This online exhibition catalogues books that have survived censorship. Includes a bibliography and quotes about censorship.
Harry Potter's Courtroom Battle
This site contains a collection of news articles about the legal challenges that have been faced by the Harry Potter book series.
Should Schools Ban Harry Potter for Promoting Witchcraft?
Here is an article that outlines both sides of the Harry Potter debate. NOTE: This site contains ads.
Don't Give Us Little Wizards
This is a news story about one parent's opposition to Harry Potter.
Harry Potter Classroom Activity
Students can think about why people object to the Harry Potter books and decide whether they agree or disagree with this activity.
Banned Books Week Activity
Here is an activity for discussing banned books and censorship in the classroom.
PBS: The Controversy over Children's Literature
This page discusses the arguements for and against censoring childrens' literature, with emphasis on the work of Maurice Sendak. NOTE: This site links to a message board.
National Coalition Against Censorship
This site has news, articles, and educational resources relating to censorship in literature, education, art, science, entertainment, the media, and the internet.
NPR: Judy Blum on Censorship
Click on "Listen" to hear Judy Blume talk about censorship and her books. The interview is about ten minutes long.
eThemes Resource: First Amendment
These sites have lesson plans and activity ideas about the rights protected in the First Amendment. Learn about the freedoms of speech, religion, and press, and the rights to assemble and petition the government. Includes some online quizzes. There is a link to an eThemes Resource on the Bill of Rights.
eThemes Resource: Literature: "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" by Mark Twain
These sites have summaries and discussion questions for this controversial book by Mark Twain. Read about the characters, themes, and symbolism in the book. Several classroom activities are included. You can also take an interactive quiz or read the entire book online. Includes eThemes Resources on Mark Twain and slavery.