“Unsuitable” Books

Young Adult Fiction and Censorship


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SKU: 9780786474196 Categories: ,

About the Book

Focusing on the attempted and successful banning of young adult fiction from media centers and classrooms, this book treats the legal and experiential history of censorship in libraries and public schools. It also looks closely at young adult novels from the early 1970s until today that have been the subject of book challenges. The authors discussed include Judy Blume, S.E. Hinton, Chris Crutcher, Jean Craighead George, M.E. Kerr, Mildred Taylor, and Sherman Alexie. This book offers parents, teachers and librarians arguments against censorship based on literary merit and societal benefit.

About the Author(s)

Caren J. Town is a professor of English at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, Georgia.

Bibliographic Details

Caren J. Town
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 200
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7419-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1682-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Preface 1

One. Dangerous Words: Censorship in the Public Schools 5

Two. “Someone should tell them”: S. E. Hinton’s The Outsiders (1967) 15

Three. The Great Adventure: Judy Blume’s Resilient Young Narrators (1970–1981) 24

Four. “When fear seizes”: Jean Craighead George’s Julie of the Wolves (1972) 38

Five. Censorship 70s Style: Robert Cormier’s The Chocolate War (1974) 47

Six. “No clouds of glory”: Katherine Paterson’s Prodigal Children (1977–1980) 57

Seven. Chris Crutcher’s Painful Honesty (1983–2001) 80

Eight. “A stronger weapon”: Cassie Logan on The Road to Memphis (1990) 100

Nine. “Simple moments of exquisite happiness”: Lois Lowry’s The Giver (1993) 115

Ten. “Don’t you two be strangers!” M.E. Kerr’s Deliver Us from Evie (1994) 125

Eleven. “Be the tree”: Trauma, Recovery and Voice in Laurie Halse Anderson’s Speak (1999) 138

Twelve. “A beautiful and ugly thing”: Sherman Alexie’s Absolutely True Diary (2007) 150

Conclusion—Challenges Ahead 167

Chapter Notes 173

Bibliography 179

Index 189

Book Reviews & Awards

“well-researched and well-written”—Catholic Library World.