Back in October, 2010 I heard about Banned Book week. This is a project spearheaded by the American Library Association as \”an annual event celebrating the freedom to read and the importance of the First Amendment\”. Held during the last week of September, Banned Book Week highlights the benefits of free and open access to information while drawing attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting the actual or attempted banning of books across the United States.\”
The ALA promotes the freedom to choose, or to express one\’s opinions, even if that opinion might be considered unorthodox or unpopular; and stresses the importance of ensuring the availability of those viewpoints to all who wish to read them. For more information on the ALA and the Office of Intellectual Freedom, please visit this link: Banned & Challenged Books
To help in this cause, last October I posted two pictures on my official Facebook page to bring attention to Banned Book Week. It just astounds me that in a country where freedom of the press and expression of thought are guaranteed by a national Constitution, we have one of the highest and most self-righteous rates of censorship in the world.
I was looking at that folder in my Facebook photo album and I was struck with a rather great idea. Every single week during 2011 I was going to feature a different book that was challenged, removed, or otherwise shut out and blocked from libraries and schools, and invite everyone to discuss and debate the issue and the specific books.
Maybe together we can raise awareness and stand up against such blatant attempts at censorship. I open the floor to all in hopes that strong intellectual and respectful debates open the lines of communication. Remember the wise words of Robert Quillen, “Discussion is an exchange of knowledge; an argument an exchange of ignorance.”
In the short time since I started this, the response has been amazing and it became an ongoing and much-larger project with long-term goals. I created an official organization, Banned Books Awareness and Reading for Knowledge, which is a community education project that stresses the importance of free and open access to information in society; and to bring attention to the ongoing issue of the censorship of free thought by featuring and discussing in open forum the actual or attempted banning of books across the United States of America.
For more information, and to join the cause, please visit the BBARK website today at http://www.deepforestproductions.com/BBARK.html
The reason BBARK was chosen as the project\’s acronym is simple. It\’s a play on my name, but more importantly, in Native American culture the Wolf\’s Medicine, or power, is the pathfinder; the teacher; and dogs bark to call attention or as a warning.
Here is the official logo for Banned Books Awareness and Reading for Knowledge (BBARK):
Here is a promotional flier/poster for my Banned Books project.
I will be reaching out to schools, libraries, bookstores, and other public locations to display this poster in the hopes of launching an all-out media campaign against censorship. I invite each and every one of you to download the high-resolution image (400 dpi, 3.9 MB, 8.5\”x11\”), print it out, share it, and display it proudly across the nation.
The image can be downloaded at this link: http://rwolfbaldassarro.deviantart.com/#/d3a8wra
Right-click on the completed image and choose \”Save As…\” to start the download process. Your browser may have different steps for downloading images.
Share the Knowledge!