People who ban books or, even worse, mistake them for some kind of font-embellished kindling, are not exactly known for their flawless logic or profound wisdom.
Even so, general ignorance gives way to a special kind of strange as we count down the top ten books banned for the weirdest reasons.
The Diary of Anne Frank by Anne Frank
The Alabama State Textbook Committee went down in book-banning history in 1983 when they deemed The Diary of Anne Frank, and I quote, ‘a real downer’ and banned it from their school library shelves.
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
One of the greatest anti-racism books of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been banned in Minnesota and Texas and has been challenged time and time again for its use of racial slurs and accused of ‘promoting white supremacy’. What would Atticus say?
Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
Banned during the civil war in the confederate states for its anti-slavery message, Uncle Tom’s Cabin was also banned in Russia by Nicholas I because of its positive idea of equality. Don’t hold back, guys, tell us exactly what you think.
Lysistrata by Aristophanes
An ancient Greek play considered by some to be Aristophanes greatest work, Lysistrata was banned in the USA 1967 from 1873 to 1930 for its anti-war message and portrayal of powerful women. The play was banned again, in Greece in 1967, for the same reasons.
The ‘Harry Potter’ Series by J.K. Rowling
Christian groups all over the USA continue to take umbrage with J.K. Rowling for her depiction of the world of magic. The temerity of it. Fancy using magical powers, like levitation, a plot device to tell a story about fighting evil and showing love to all humanity…
Animal Farm by George Orwell
No-one wants to be portrayed as a pig and on publication in 1945, Animal Farm was banned in the USSR and other communist countries for its apparent portrayal of the leaders of the Soviet Republic. Babe, Piglet and Peppa better watch out as Animal Farm was also banned in the UAE as its depiction of an anthropomorphic, talking pig.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
It seems anthropomorphism as a literary device is not okay in Hunan, China, either. In 1930 Lewis Carrol’s nonsensical fantasy adventure was banned for its depiction of animals using human language, for fear the children would get mixed up between their parents and their pets.