Banned books (in the USA)

Still no idea if the Netherlands has a banned book list1, but each year I am curious to see what the current lists are in the USA.

The ALA (America Library Association) has an annual Banned Books Week, this year from September 24 until October 1. Why not read up and start reading the classics? Banning books is ridiculous!

A good read on censorship is by author Judy Blume: Censorship.2

[a different previous list : no idea if I’m consistent when listing them ;-)]

On July 21, 1998, the Radcliffe Publishing Course compiled and released its own list of the century’s top 100 novels, at the request of the Modern Library editorial board. The titles below represent banned or challenged books on that list.3

  1. The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  2. The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
  3. The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
  5. The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
  6. Ulysses, by James Joyce
  7. Beloved, by Toni Morrison
  8. The Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
  9. 1984, by George Orwell
  10. Lolita, by Vladmir Nabokov
  11. Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck
  12. Catch-22, by Joseph Heller
  13. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
  14. Animal Farm, by George Orwell
  15. The Sun Also Rises, by Ernest Hemingway
  16. As I Lay Dying, by William Faulkner
  17. A Farewell to Arms, by Ernest Hemingway
  18. Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston
  19. Invisible Man, by Ralph Ellison
  20. Song of Solomon, by Toni Morrison
  21. Gone with the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell
  22. Native Son, by Richard Wright
  23. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, by Ken Kesey
  24. Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut
  25. For Whom the Bell Tolls, by Ernest Hemingway
  26. The Call of the Wild, by Jack London
  27. Go Tell it on the Mountain, by James Baldwin
  28. All the King’s Men, by Robert Penn Warren
  29. The Lord of the Rings, by J.R.R. Tolkien
  30. The Jungle, by Upton Sinclair
  31. Lady Chatterley’s Lover, by D.H. Lawrence
  32. A Clockwork Orange, by Anthony Burgess
  33. The Awakening, by Kate Chopin
  34. In Cold Blood, by Truman Capote
  35. The Satanic Verses, by Salman Rushdie
  36. Sophie’s Choice, by William Styron
  37. Sons and Lovers, by D.H. Lawrence
  38. Cat’s Cradle, by Kurt Vonnegut
  39. A Separate Peace, by John Knowles
  40. Naked Lunch, by William S. Burroughs
  41. Brideshead Revisited, by Evelyn Waugh
  42. Women in Love, by D.H. Lawrence
  43. The Naked and the Dead, by Norman Mailer
  44. Tropic of Cancer, by Henry Miller
  45. An American Tragedy, by Theodore Dreiser
  46. Rabbit, Run, by John Updike


  1. (D)rukpersvrijheid, beperkt door ‘t Plakkaat van 1723, toch altijd zeer groot ten tijde van de Republiek. Censuur onder Napoleon; zie daar . Vrijheid van drukpers zeer beperkt onder Willem I; zie Van der Straeten . Drukpersvervolgingen ± 1820, opnieuw 1828. Nog in ‘t zelfde jaar moest de Regering de intrekking van de Perswet voorstellen; afgekondigd 16 Mei 1829. Nieuwe drukperswetten voorgesteld 11 Dec. 1829, begeleid door een uitvoerige Koninklijke boodschap, in het Noorden toegejuicht als mannelijke daad tegen de ‘Jezuïeten’ en ‘Jacobijnen’ van het Z. Toegezonden aan de rechters en de andere ambtenaren, die binnen 48 uur hun instemming betuigen moesten. De wet, zij het ontdaan van de scherpste bepaling, aangenomen met 93-12 stemmen; 1830. A.J. Servaas van Rooyen schreef 1896 over Verboden boeken in de 18e eeuw, 2 delen. W.G.C. Knuttel gaf een beredeneerde catalogus uit van Verboden boeken in de Republiek, 1914. In 1947 Vrijheid en onvrijheid in de Republiek, door H.A.E. van Gelder. Daarop volgde Mw. M.E. Kronenberg met Verboden Boeken in de Hervormingstijd in de Patria-reeks.
  2. Thanks to Page van der Linden for the link.
  3. From Banned and Challenged Classics, ALA Banned Books Week.