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Celebrate Banned Books Week with the San Diego Public Library! This month, library branches throughout the city will feature book displays, read-alouds, story times, crafts, films, and more that highlight titles that have been censored or banned in the United States—from children’s picture books to classics to award-winning literature. Stand up, speak out, learn more, and celebrate your freedom to read!
Banned Books Week (September 22-28, 2019) is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. Typically held during the last week of September, it spotlights current and historical attempts to censor books in libraries and schools. It 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.
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Banned Books Week Events

Wednesday, September 18, 2019 | 4:30 - 5:30 p.m. | University Heights Library
Celebrate Banned Book Week! At this fun workshop, explore fun and colorful ways to make an accordion book by adding parts that move while you learn about six popular banned children’s books. For ages 7 and up. Parental supervision is required for younger children. Registration required. Space is limited. This program is sponsored by the Friends of the University Heights Library.
"I Read Banned Books" Photo Op
September 22 - 28, 2019 | North Park Library
Celebrate Banned Book week with a special photo opportunity! Take a mug shot in our "I Read Banned Books" photo frame, then share it on social media.
Monday, September 23, 2019 | 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. | Central Library, Neil Morgan Auditorium
Commemorate Banned Books Week and join San Diego Public Library staff and community readers for the library’s annual Read-Aloud Read-a-thon.  A new book and a new reader every 15-30 minutes, leading up to the Banned Books Week Live! Event at 6:30 pm.
Monday, September 23, 2019 | 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. | Central Library, Neil Morgan Auditorium
During Banned Books Week, join us for a risqué evening of forbidden knowledge in books censored in the US in 2018. Stage actors from Write Out Loud and more will perform live readings from selected books marked with the scarlet letter of censorship. Join us for an entertaining evening of bacchanal revelry in the written word. Refreshments served.
Wednesday, September 25, 2019 | 11:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. | City Heights/Weingart Library
Take a turn reading aloud from a banned book in recognition of Banned Books Week, September 22 - 28, 2019.
Wednesday, September 25, 2019 | 2:30 - 3:30 p.m. | San Carlos Library
Celebrate your freedom to read! In honor of Banned Books Week (Sept. 22-28), kids from the audience are invited to act out “The Paper Bag Princess” by Robert Munsch. Although a modern storytime favorite, this title was once the object of censorship attempts for its controversial ending – the princess does not marry the prince! With expert direction from children’s theater actress, Stacey Wein, this is a fun way for kids to build confidence and oral skills.
Thursday, September 26, 2019 | 6:30 – 8:00 pm | Lestat's West
Join San Diego Writers, Ink to celebrate the freedom to read. Yes, in 2019, books are still being banned in America! A special tribute to A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo, #2 on the list of the American Library Association's list of most challenged books of 2018 will be presented featuring Write Out Loud's Veronica Murphy and Walter Ritter. And some of San Diego's best known writers (Frank DiPalermo, Zoe Ghahremani, Tia Meredith, Suzana Norberg, and Kary Wall) will read from a curated selection of books that have been challenged and/or banned over the years.
Preschool Storytime: Banned Books Week
Friday, September 27, 2019 | 10:30 a.m. | College-Rolando Library
Celebrate Banned Books Week with readings from beloved picture books that have appeared on ALA's Banned Books lists over the years.
Movie @ Your Library: Beauty and the Beast
Friday, September 27, 2019 | 4:00 p.m. | College-Rolando Library
Attend a screening of this recent Disney movie and join us for a brief discussion on why this version of the film was banned from select movie theaters.
Banned Books Read In
Saturday, September 28, 2019 | 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.  | Pacific Beach Library
Celebrate Banned Books Week with readers at the top of each hour reading aloud from a banned book. Everyone is welcome to join in and take a turn!

Banned Books Week Displays

The following libraries will feature one or more Banned Books Week displays in September. Discover more about titles that have been challenged or banned, then check out some great books!
Carmel Mountain
Carmel Valley
Central Library
Kensington-Normal Heights
Mission Hills-Hillcrest
MIssion Valley
University Heights
University Community
Rancho Bernardo
Ocean Beach
Otay Mesa-Nestor
  • Banned Books Week display at the Central Library
  • Banned Books Week display at the Central Library
  • Banned Books Week display at the Central Library
  • Banned Books Week display at the Central Library
  • Banned Books Week display at the Central Library
  • Banned Books Week display at the Pacific Beach Library
  • Banned Books Week display at the Carmel Mountain Library
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