“What gives me hope,” Johnson told BBC Culture, “is that the majority of the country is against book bans. books. And that we’re winning in a lot of the counties, and keeping the books on the shelves. We’re galvanized and organized and ready to continue this fight for as long as it takes. Also, banning the books hasn’t not stop publishers from allowing more stories to be written. Eventually, there will be so many stories that you can’t ban them all.”
Nobel laureate Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye, a coming-of-age story that explores the effects of racism on a young girl’s psyche, is third on the ALA’s most contested list. Morrison once explained that the title of the book was inspired by a black childhood friend who, at age 11, told him that she had been praying for two years to have blue eyes. “That kind of racism hurts,” Morrison said. “It’s not lynchings and murders and drownings. It’s an inner pain.”
As BBC Culture honors the 100 greatest children’s books of all time, it’s a good time to imagine the children’s books yet to be written (and illustrated), the myriad voices yet to be heard, the stories yet to be told. . And consider Morrison’s eloquent argument against the book ban in Burn This Book, the PEN America anthology she edited. “The thought that leads me to gaze with dread at the fading away of other voices, unwritten novels, poems whispered or swallowed for fear of being heard by the wrong people, outlaw tongues flourishing underground, authority-defying essayist questions never asked, undirected plays, canceled films – the thought is a nightmare. As if an entire universe was described in invisible ink.”
Find out more about BBC Culture‘the 100 greatest children‘books :
– Top 100 Children’s Books
– Why Where the Wild Things Are is the greatest children’s book
– The greatest children’s books of the 21st century
– Who voted?
#100Best Children’s Books
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