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The impact of book bans on Idaho students

A woman sits at a computer in an open library space.
GwynethJones -The Daring Librarian!

Mark Twain, William Shakespeare, Harriet Beecher Stowe; these authors share more than just a legacy of classic literature and a place in school curriculums. They’re authors whose works have been banned from classrooms over the years for content some deemed controversial or obscene.

Across the country, books are once again being challenged in schools and libraries, with librarians holding the line to make sure there’s access to materials some find inappropriate. Here in Idaho, the pressure to remove books from library shelves is coming from activist groups and the GOP party.

Dr. Jonathan Friedman, the director of free expression and education programs at PEN America, joined Idaho Matters to talk more about book banning. He will be in Boise later this week as part of a panel discussion at the City Club of Boise where they will discuss what kinds of books are being challenged and why. They'll also take a look at who should and should not be deciding what books make it onto the library shelves and into our children's hands.

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Hi! I’m Gemma Gaudette, the host of the award-winning show, Idaho Matters. During the day you’ll find me researching and writing about all the fascinating topics we tackle on our show. And of course, at noon, each weekday you’ll find me live behind the microphone as Idaho Matters airs.