Anti-family, Satanism, religious viewpoint, violence; The Gwinnett County (GA) school board rejected a parent's pleas to take Harry Potter books out of school libraries based on the claim they promote witchcraft (2007); Proposed for removal by teacher's prayer group at Russell Springs (KY) high school for dealing with ghosts, cults, and witchcraft (2003); challenged in Moscow (Russia) by a Slavic cultural organization that alleged the stories about magic and wizards could draw students into Satanism; Challenged for encouraging lying, cheating, stealing and witchcraft. Burned in NM as "a masterpiece of satanic deception" (2002).
Artist: Logan Bliss
“This piece depicts an icon of mental institutions, despite not all mental illness being violent. The simplicity and minimalism represent that of a mental hospital.”
Reason for Banning:
In 1974, five residents of Strongsville, OH, sued the board of education to remove the novel. Labeling it "pornographic," they charged the novel "glorifies criminal activity, has a tendency to corrupt juveniles and contains descriptions of bestiality, bizarre violence, and torture, dismemberment, death, and human elimination;" Challenged at the Placentia-Yorba Linda, CA Unified School District (2000) after complaints by parents stated that teachers "can choose the best books, but they keep choosing this garbage over and over again."
Perks of Being a Wallflower by Ken Kesey
Artist: Myah Taylor
“Friendship is a theme in this novel and the friends of the novel’s protagonist, Charlie, get him through tough times. Charlie is a writer who addresses the reader as a friend, creating an intimate reading experience. I wanted my piece to reflect this.”
Reason for Banning: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, homosexuality, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group (2013); Anti-family, drugs, homosexuality, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, suicide, unsuited to age group (2009)
Animal Farm by George Orwell
Artist: Logan Bliss
Artist's Statement: "The representation of the pig in a suit depicts how the character in the book bastardized the communist principle that, 'All animals are equal,' similar to the course of events such as those in the Russian Revolution."
Reason for Banning: Identified in 1968 as being a "problem book" in New York State's English classrooms; the reason cited: "Orwell was a communist." Banned in Kenya in 1991 because it "criticizes corrupt leaders who abuse political power." Banned in 2002 from schools in the United Arab Emirates because it contains written or illustrated material that contradicts Islamic and Arab values—in this text, pictures of alcoholic drinks, pigs, and other "indecent images."
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Artist: Jacob WattersArtist's Statement: "Banning a Book that carries such a vast historical weight is equivalent to killing a part of ourselves to create a facade of perfeciton. This is represented by the dead mockingbird held in the hands. Killing an innocent, peaceful mockingbird is as irresponsible as killing part of our history."
Reason for Banning: Challenged at a middle school in Brentwood, TN (2006) because the book contains "profanity" and because its use of racial slurs promotes "racial hatred, racial division, racial separation, and promotes white supremacy;" Removed (2009) from the St. Edmund Campion Secondary School classrooms in Brampton Ontario, Canada becacuase a parent objected to language used int he novel, including the word "nigger."