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Canisius College Andrew L. Bouwhuis Library hosts its 5th Annual Banned Book Week in coordination with the annual American Library Association (ALA) commemoration with several events from Monday, September 23 – Friday, September 27.

Banned Book Week celebrates intellectual freedom, including freedom to read, benefits of free and open access to information, and also draws attention to the harms of censorship by spotlighting actual or attempted banning of books, currently and historically.

The ceremonial Cutting of the Yellow Caution Tape kicks off the crowd favorite Read Out on Wednesday, September 25 in ALB Library’s 1st floor at 12:05. Enter your name at the Single Service desk for a chance to win the opportunity of a life-time — “Official Caution Tape Ribbon Cutter.” Winner will “cut the caution tape” to begin the Read Out sessions, and must be available to attend the Read Out on Wednesday. We’ll provide the official scissors.

Then grab your lunch, a friend and a banned or challenged book to Read Out. Sign-up sheets are available at the Reference Desk for those who have to read-and-run. Readers are asked to tell the audience a little bit about their book choice, and read aloud for 3- 5 minutes. A microphone will be available. The Read-Out is scheduled from 12:05 p.m.  – 1 p.m. or until all readers are heard, and will continue at the same time and place on Thursday, September 26 and Friday, September 27.

Mark Twain, author of one of the most banned books of all time will join us on Friday, September 27 at 11:30 am. Otherwise, known as WKBW-TV, Channel 7 meteorologist and Twain impersonator, Randall will read from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and tell us a bit about “his” trouble with censors.

Other special events for BBW include:

Monday – Friday @ Noon in ALB Library – The Circle of Women, Women & Gender Studies Club will be holding a raffle each day for gift baskets. Donations will go to support the work of  The International Organization of Circle of Women whose mission is to “mobilize students to provide access to education for girls without it.” Canisius College is one of several colleges in the United States with membership in the organization

Tuesday, September 24- Julianna Beaumont, a 2013 graduate of the college’s School of Education will be the guest of Dr. Nicki Calabrese, coordinator of Early Childhood Education and her class, Children’s Literature and the Arts. Beaumont, completed her All College Honors thesis on Censorship, and continues her interest in the subject. Class participants have begun to explore the topic and will have a lively discussion about the impact of censorship on classroom teachers.

Thursday, September 26 – Archives Speaker Series, Paul Lubienecki, PhD, Catholic labor historian and vice president, Steel Plant Museum, Buffalo, will present Buffalo’s Catholic Labor Schools, Uncovering Resources That Shaped a Business Model at 2.p.m., ALB Library, 2nd floor.

Canisius librarians use Banned Book Week to encourage dialogue that supports freedom to access information, artistic expression, and tolerance.  By using the theme, TOLERANCE, the librarians emphasize their long-held professional ethic —intellectual freedom for all. They join their colleagues throughout the U.S. in this annual commemoration, now in its 31st year. The first Banned Book Week was held in Chicago, and continues there in Bug House Square across from the Newbery Library where speakers and readers address the crowd from old-fashioned soap boxes.  As a nod to our colleagues in the Windy City, your Canisius Librarians dub their Read-Out space, Bug House Square East.

For ALA’s list of books and information click :

For more information contact Kathleen DeLaney, Archivist/Reference Librarian at ext. 8421 or

Submitted by: Kathleen DeLaney, archivist/reference librarian