Banned Books in America

Book bans are a national issue

Reading is a path to truth. That’s why the freedom to read is essential to the freedom to learn – and why it’s critical that we come together to fight book bans.

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State legislators and governors are making it illegal to teach honestly about the history and reality of racism and other forms of discrimination in our country. Far-right activists are trying to purge schools and libraries of books that feature Black people, LGBTQ people, and others they deem unworthy of students’ attention.

In the 2021-2022 school year, PEN America logged over 1,500 instances of individual books being banned. These bans happened all across the country, impacting over 2 million students.

Take Our Quiz: Banned or not?

So what gets a book banned? Take a look at these books from the 2021-2022 school year and guess which ones were banned.

Join the movement

The Far Right is waging a war against our ability to think, question, and engage in our democracy. And if we let it go unchecked, American kids will be less informed and less versed in critical thinking than students from around the world, unprepared to compete. It puts their futures – and our democracy – at risk.

Our kids deserve the freedom to learn

We’re fighting back against the far-right efforts to ban books – and we need your help. Join the movement today!

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About People For the American Way

People For the American Way, a national progressive advocacy organization, inspires and mobilizes community and cultural leaders to advance Truth, Justice and the American Way. We convene courageous Americans, produce compelling media and organize campaigns to defend our democracy from authoritarian threats and advance America’s promise that everyone will enjoy freedom, safety and a vote that counts.

Join the Movement