Today I was sorting through the mail and noticed an tidbit on the cover about 50 books that have been banned from American schools and libraries in the AARP Bulletin. It wasn't so much as an article as a general list of banned books that might surprise you. My reaction wasn't so much of surprise but outrage at the list. It's long so I'll stick it in a spoiler tag. Spoiler Too Political 1. Uncle Tom's Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe, 1852 2. All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque, 1928 3. A Farewell to Arms, Ernest Hemingway, 1929 4. The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck, 1939 5. For Whom the Bell Tolls, Ernest Hemingway, 1940 6. Animal Farm, George Orwell, 1945 7. 1984, George Orwell, 1949 8. Doctor Zhivago, Boris Pasternak, 1957 9. Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., 1969 10. In the Spirit of Crazy Horse, Peter Matthiessen, 1983 Too Much Sex 1. Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert, 1856 2. Tess of the d'Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy, 1891 3. Ulysses, James Joyce, 1922 4. The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway, 1926 5. Lady Chatterley's Lover, D.H. Lawrence, 1928 6. Tropic of Cancer, Henry Miller, 1934 7. Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov, 1955 8. Peyton Place, Grace Metalious, 1956 9. Rabbit, Run, John Updike, 1960 10. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou, 1969 11. Jaws, Peter Benchley, 1974 12. Forever, Judy Blume, 1975 13. The Prince of Tides, Pat Conroy, 1986 14. Beloved, Toni Morrison, 1987 15. How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents, Julia Alvarez, 1991 Irreligious 1. On the Origin of Species, Charles Darwin, 1859 2. The Lord of the Rings trilogy, J.R.R. Tolkien, 1954 3. The Last Temptation of Christ, Nikos Kazantzakis, 1960 4. Bless Me, Ultima, Rudolfo Anya, 1972 5. Harry Potter series, J.K. Rowling, 1997-2007 Socially Offensive 1. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, Benjamin Franklin, 1791 2. The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne, 1850 3. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, 1884 4. As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner, 1930 5. Brave New World, Aldous Huxley, 1932 6. Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell, 1936 7. Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck, 1937 8. Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl, Anne Frank, 1947 9. The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger, 1951 10. Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury, 1953 11. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee, 1960 12. James and the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl, 1961 13. Catch-22, Joseph Heller, 1961 14. A Clockwork Orange, Anthony Burgess, 1962 15. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Ken Kesey, 1962 16. In Cold Blood, Truman Capote, 1966 17. Cujo, Stephen King, 1981 18. The Color Purple, Alice Walker, 1982 19. Ordinary People, Judith Guest, 1982 20. A Thousand Acres, Jane Smiley, 1991 The act of book banning has outraged me since I first learned of its practice. As much as I would like to understand that certain books aren't suitable for children, I am wholeheartedly against the concept of banning books. Period. Once that door is opened, it leads to banning books that shouldn't be banned at all. Honestly, I studied a good portion of these books in school! And I went to public school in the US. What do you think? Are library associations correct in limiting their stock of books at public libraries? Should schools not teach certain books because they are "too political" or "socially offensive?"