Seeking Sanctuary

Seeking Sanctuary

June 3, 2024

Texas House Bill 900, which would have restricted materials in school libraries and required vendors to assign book ratings based on so-called appropriateness before selling them to schools, had just been signed by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott in June and was set to go into effect September 1, 2023. (On September 19, the bill was temporarily blocked … Continue reading Seeking Sanctuary

Graphic of Field Guides with Nihar Malaviya's headshot

Protecting the Equalizers

April 8, 2024

Growing up in Rajkot, India, I regularly walked nearly an hour to the closest library to check out a book. It was there that I discovered new perspectives and places. My whole world expanded, and my imagination flourished. It didn’t take me long to read the entire children’s section! When my family moved to the … Continue reading Protecting the Equalizers

Author and education professor Dr. Bettina Love (left) speaks with Sophia Fifner, president and CEO of the Columbus (Ohio) Metropolitan Club at the Public Library Association conference on April 4.Photo: Kinser Studios

‘Going for Broke’

April 5, 2024

“And by Uncle Jimmy, I mean the James Baldwin,” Love, a bestselling author and education activist, said April 4 during her Big Ideas session at the Greater Columbus (Ohio) Convention Center. In 1963, the novelist and civil rights activist said to a group of New York City educators, “To any citizen of this country who figures … Continue reading ‘Going for Broke’

From left: Filmmakers Trish Adlesic, Nazenet Habtezghi, and Sheila Nevins.

Newsmakers: Trish Adlesic and Nazenet Habtezghi

February 20, 2024

Adlesic is codirector and producer of The ABCs of Book Banning, a 2023 film that has been nominated for an Academy Award in the Best Documentary Short category. Sheila Nevins, famed documentarian and current head of MTV Documentary Films, led the project, and journalist-turned-filmmaker Nazenet Habtezghi also codirected. American Libraries spoke with Adlesic and Habtezghi … Continue reading Newsmakers: Trish Adlesic and Nazenet Habtezghi

Jesús Trejo

Newsmaker: Jesús Trejo

February 19, 2024

Its companion book, Mamá’s Magnificent Dancing Plantitas (Minerva), will be released this September. American Libraries spoke with Trejo after his appearance at the American Library Association’s 2024 LibLearnX conference in Baltimore about his family, what fans can expect from his future work, and book bans. What role have libraries and librarians played in your life? … Continue reading Newsmaker: Jesús Trejo

Emily Drabinski and Michele Norris

2024 LibLearnX Wrap-Up

February 5, 2024

Authors told inspiring stories and emphasized the importance of having open conversations. Presenters addressed the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI), covering different ways librarians have started using the technology, as well as measuring its impact. Speakers tackled critical topics in the profession, including intellectual freedom, community engagement, and leadership and management. A different dialogue Opening … Continue reading 2024 LibLearnX Wrap-Up

Preparing for Pushback

January 21, 2024

Goswami presented at “Be Prepared: Program Challenges at Your Public Library,” a January 21 session at the American Library Association’s (ALA) 2024 LibLearnX conference in Baltimore. He was joined by Amanda Sand Vazquez, director of Dubuque County (Iowa) Library District and president of the Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT), and Betsy Gomez, assistant director of … Continue reading Preparing for Pushback

2023 Year in Review graphic

2023 Year in Review

January 2, 2024

Another record year for book challenges Preliminary data from the Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) through August 31 showed a 20% increase in reported book challenges for 2023—surpassing the record set in 2022. The data also showed an increase in challenges that targeted multiple titles, with libraries in 11 states receiving challenges that included 100 or … Continue reading 2023 Year in Review

Banned Books Week 2023: Let Freedom Read, featuring the Uncensored Library in Minecraft


October 3, 2023

Libraries and schools nationwide are working overtime to repel an unprecedented level of attacks on the freedom to read. Vigorous debate, advocacy, and coalition-building remain the backbone of the fight against book banning. But some libraries, groups, and individuals have recently taken innovative approaches to ensure information access for all. Books Unbanned is one of … Continue reading Unbanned