Office for Intellectual Freedom

Celebrate Banned Books Week 2021 with Resources, Events

During Banned Books Week (Sept. 26 – Oct. 2, 2021), libraries, their users and readers everywhere are invited to celebrate and exercise their freedom to read with resources and events from the American Library Association (ALA).

Banned Books Week is an annual event that spotlights current and historical attempts to censor books in libraries and schools and brings together the entire book community in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even ideas that contain uncomfortable truths.

Banned Books Week to unite communities

CHICAGO – At a time when LGBTQIA+ books and books that focus on racism and racial justice are challenged for removal from library and school bookshelves, this year's Banned Books Week, Sept. 26 – Oct. 2, is a reminder of the unifying power of stories and the divisiveness of censorship. This year's theme is "Books Unite Us. Censorship Divides Us." and it underscores how books reach across boundaries and build connections between readers.

ALA adopts new Code of Ethics principle on racial and social justice

CHICAGO – During the American Library Association (ALA) Annual and Exhibition virtual conference, the ALA Council unanimously adopted a new ninth principle on racial and social justice to the association's Code of Ethics. This new professional guideline illustrates ALA's continued commitment to providing library professionals with resources that promote equity within library service and librarianship.

IFRT, FTRF and UIUC iSchool Honor Intellectual Freedom Award Winners at Virtual Celebration featuring Banned Author Kyle Lukoff

The ALA Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT), the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF), and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) iSchool invite library professionals and the public to a free virtual celebration for their intellectual freedom award winners on Thursday, June 24th 2021 at 5:00 p.m. CT.

Julius C. Jefferson Jr., ALA President and former FTRF President, will open the celebration with a talk highlighting the value of intellectual freedom awards in the profession and in our culture. 

OIF’s updated hit list of banned and challenged children's books

CHICAGO — In our polarized environment, the censorship and outright banning of children’s books which some deem to be controversial or objectionable remains a major concern for libraries. Intellectual freedom champion Pat R. Scales returns to the fray with “Books under Fire: A Hit List of Banned and Challenged Children's Books, Second Edition,” published by ALA Editions in cooperation with ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF).

Jason Reynolds Named Inaugural Honorary Chair of Banned Books Week

The American Library Association (ALA) and the Banned Books Week Coalition are excited to announce that banned author Jason Reynolds has been named the inaugural Honorary Chair for Banned Books Week 2021. The New York Times bestselling author will headline the annual celebration of the right to read, which takes place September 26 – October 2, 2021.

Spring brings fresh posters and bookmarks in ALA Graphics catalog

CHICAGO – The spring/summer ALA Graphics catalog delivers a host of fresh posters and bookmarks encouraging readers of all ages. Gracing the cover is a vibrant poster featuring Varian Johnson’s Twins, illustrated by Shannon Wright.

IFRT Free Memberships for Students

The Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT) is offering free memberships for students. Beginning March 15, 2021, students can fill out this form to receive a free membership to IFRT. Up to 200 current ALA student members and up to 25 students who are not ALA members will be given a free membership on a first-come, first-served basis.

Freedom to Read Foundation to Offer an ALA Conference Scholarship through the Gordon M. Conable Fund

CHICAGO — Are you interested in Intellectual Freedom? Would you like to attend the American Library Association’s (ALA) Annual Conference in June and learn how the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) and other groups in ALA are working to protect access to information? Applications are now open for the 2021 Gordon M.