Campus readout pays tribute to banned books ... and to our freedom to read


Library dean Olivia Madison closed out a central campus readout Sept. 25 that highlighted a dozen book titles that have been banned or challenged at some time in our nation's history. Madison read attorney Atticus Finch's closing argument to the jury in the Harper Lee novel, To Kill a Mockingbird. Madison noted that, while Lee's book won the 1961 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, it also ranks among the Top 10 books most frequently challenged 50 years after initial publication.

The event was part of Iowa State's observance of Banned Books Week, Sept. 22-28, organized by University Library staff. Administrators and faculty from all corners of campus read excerpts from a favorite banned or challenged book. They gathered at the university's free speech zone south of the library. Photo by Bob Elbert.