Saturday, October 06, 2012

#BannedAfricanBooks: Creating a Database for Banned African Books

September 30 to October 6 was (or is) celebrated as Banned Books Week worldwide. During this period, people around the world, especially in the blogosphere, read books that have been banned at one point in before for various perceived offenses, either due to its language, sex, murder, or profanity. According to the the American Library Association who established this in 1982
Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it highlights the value of free and open access to information. Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community -- librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types -- in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.
In Africa, governments and other bodies have used several excuses to ban several books. However, every book deserves to be given the opportunity to be read. The onus lies on the reading public to decide whether they want to personally ban the book or not. It is not the prerogative of any group to decide what books an individual reads. It will interest you to note that books such as The Handmaid's Tales by Margaret Atwood, Beloved and Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, Matigari by Ngugi wa Thiong'o and others have all been banned before. 

This is an initiative worth spreading. I intend to create a database of Banned African Books. Kindly fill the form below and when you are done click submit. This database will serve as the pool from which people can choose from to read on such occasions. Your help is needed.

Before filling the form, kindly take a look at the database to see if the book has already not been added.

9 comments:

  1. This is a nice initiative. I should do some findings and come up with a list of banned books in my country and fill the form. it is really true, no one should decide which book any reader reads. Thanks for this post.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks... I will be looking forward to receiving your entry. I will share the data now and then to let people know of the books that have been banned before and to encourage its reading by all and sundry.

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  2. Replies
    1. Thanks... i hope the response will be massive.

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  3. The Kite Runner, I have read it... what a book. I did not know it was banned.

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    Replies
    1. There are several of such books. To Kill a Mockingbird was banned for its racial tone.

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  4. Nana, this a very laudable venture. So great of you to think of this. I have a copy of The Kite Runner that I am yet to read. Never knew it is a banned book. Wish I could help you out here, but I don't have a clue. All the best, my dear friend.

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    1. Thanks. I only hope people will patronise it.

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  5. Thanks, very useful website. Where do you find out the reason for banning a book. I want to find out the reason 'Ernest Cole's House of Bondage' was banned. Can you help? please email me: sally.gaule@wits.ac.za

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