Cosby books on library list for 'most challenged' works

Cosby books on library list for 'most challenged' works

Cosby books on library list for 'most challenged' works

The American Library Assn. released its list of the most banned and challenged booksin 2016, with Bill Cosby joining perennially challenged authors John Green and David Levithan.

The annual list from the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom tends to include a broad range of titles with the potential to offend. The reason is unique for the list, which the ALA announced Monday: not the books themselves, but the multiple accusations of sexual assault against the actor-comedian.

But Cosby's "Little Bill" books are believed to the first time a title has been targeted exclusively for its author and not its content, ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom Director James LaRue said. More than a dozen books in the series have been published since and spawned an Emmy award-winning children's television series that ran from November 1999 to February 2004.

Cosby's books focus on the adventures of Bill Jr., a five-year-old from Philadelphia. Photo via ReutersThe popular series written by Cosby and illustrated by Varnette Honeywood made its debut in ninth place on the American Library Association's annual list of the books that are most often challenged in USA libraries.

It is the first time Cosby, who was once a symbol for family values in the United States, appeared on the ALA's annual Most Challenged Books list. The ALA has long believed that for every challenge reported, four to five are not brought to its attention and that self-censorship is increasingly common. That sets it apart from the rest of the books listed, which are primarily challenged due to their content.

Topping the most recent ALA roster of challenged books is This One Summer written by Mariko Tamaki and illustrated by Jillian Tamaki. "I would also say that you may disagree with him as a person, but these books aren't about that".

Despite winning a Stonewall Award and a Lambda Literary Award, administrators removed this children's novel because it includes a transgender child and the "sexuality was not appropriate at elementary levels", according to the ALA.

Which of these challenged / banned books have you read?

John Green's "Looking for Alaska" was No. 6, cited for being 'sexually explicit'.

This children's picture book memoir was challenged and removed because it portrays a transgender child and because of language, sex education, and offensive viewpoints, the ALA said.

This compilation of adult comic books by two award-winning artists was challenged and banned for being considered sexually explicit by library staff and administrators.

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