UNCENSORED: Banned Books Week

UNCENSORED: Banned Books Week

Celebrate the freedom to read at DC Public Library

Uncensored Banned Books Week Logo


Banned Books Week 2017 will be held September 24 - 30, 2017

Join us for events across the city as we celebrate our theme of "Texts Against Tyranny", culminating in our UNCENSORED Underground Cocktail Party at DuPont Underground, benefiting the DC Public Library Foundation.

Featured events include:

Launched in 1982 in response to a surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries, Banned Books Week is the national book community's annual celebration of the freedom to read.

Every year, the DC Public Library joins hundreds of libraries and bookstores around the country in drawing attention to the problem of censorship by mounting displays of challenged books and hosting a variety of events.

Banned Books Week eResources

NoveList Plus
Choose from hundreds of titles to find your next dystopian read with NoveList. Use the filters to narrow choices by audience, storyline, pace, writing style, and more!

Opposing Viewpoints in Context
Is banning books really so bad? Get every side of the argument and draw your own conclusions: Book Banning

View the Banned Books Week Collection on OverDrive.

Criterion Collection logoCriterion Collection on Alexander Street Press
A list of movies in the Criterion collection that have been banned by governments around the world, free to view with your library card:
Access Videos logoAccess Videos

InstantFlix (Powered by IndieFlix)InstantFlix logo
The films suggested below all explore themes rooted in dystopia. To access films in InstantFlix, create an account with an email address and your DC Public Library card number. 

"Howl" (full length movie – 85 minutes)
It's San Francisco in 1957, and an American masterpiece is put on trial. Howl, the film, recounts this dark moment using three interwoven threads: the tumultuous life events that led a young Allen Ginsberg to find his true voice as an artist, society's reaction (the obscenity trial), and animation that echoes the poem's surreal style. All three coalesce in hybrid that dramatizes the birth of a counterculture.

"Haze" (short film – 10 minutes)
Set in a dystopian future, two spies attempt to infiltrate a top weapons facility - only to find themselves caught in a deadly dilemma.

"Scenes from the Suburbs" (short film – 30 minutes)
A thirty-minute short film inspired by Arcade Fire's critically acclaimed album, The Suburbs, and its themes of war and coming of age in suburbia. Co-written by Arcade Fire’s Win Butler & Will Butler, this companion piece to the album follows the narrator, living in a suburban dystopia, trying to piece together fragmented memories from when he was a teenager, and his experiences with his friends as they grow apart.

"The Caravan Trilogy" (short film – 25 minutes)
An abandoned caravan hidden in a dense forest provides the unusual setting for three vivid and unpredictable character-driven short films. The Caravan Trilogy subverts expectations with its genre-bending mix of dark emotion, visceral menace and dystopian science fiction.  

More Information About Banned Books Week