Holden Caulfield, Huckleberry Finn, and even Harry Potter are no strangers to controversy. The characters, and more precisely, the authors behind them, have been accused of including themes or language that some find offensive.
Tonight at the Peterborough Town Library, controversial books and the authors who take written risks will instead be celebrated during what's being called a "banned book readout." The event is part of the American Library Association’s Banned Book Week, an annual event which the group says honors intellectual freedom.
“We support your right not to read, but we do not support your right to tell others what they may or may not read,” says Peterborough’s Assistant Library Director Mary Hubbard.
Hubbard says it's important that libraries include the voices of authors who potentially anger, inflame or express ideas in controversial ways, so that a diversity of thought and perspective can be shared.
“A collection that exists solely from materials that do not offend is not a collection that is of any value to our community.”
The event, which begins at 7 p.m., will include readings from various banned books, as well as a community discussion on controversial literature's importance to society. The readout is being held in partnership with the ACLU of New Hampshire, as well as The Toadstool Bookshops.