Library workers at Western University’s Graduate Resource Centre in London, Ontario, had a workshop from Alison Macrina, the library organiser whose Library Freedom Project won a battle with the US DHS over a library in New Hampshire that was offering a Tor exit node as part of a global network that delivers privacy, censorship resistance, and anonymity to all comers. Western’s librarians were so taken by Macrina’s presentation that they’ve turned on Canada’s first library-based Tor node. There is no clear law in Canada about libraries and Tor, and Macrina and the Western library folks say they’re spoiling for a fight. READ: First-ever Tor node in a Canadian library | Boing Boing
A worrying trend. A way for ordinary citizens to challenge ignorance, censorship, intellectual freedom and freedom of speech is simply to stay informed and be aware of recent events:
- Satellite images confirm major temple destroyed in Syria’s Palmyra: U.N | Reuters Canada
- Why it’s all right to be more horrified by the razing of Palmyra than mass murder | The Guardian
- Beheaded Syrian scholar refused to lead Isis to hidden Palmyra antiquities | The Guardian
- Terrifying Archives | Annoyed Librarian | Library Journal
- British Library turns down Taliban archive because of UK terror laws | The Telegraph
- Twitter Is Shutting Down Even More Government Transparency Accounts | Gizmodo
- When will Russia stop trying to re-write history? | The Telegraph
- Russian publisher prints books about Putin under names of western authors | The Guardian
- Harper Government Trashes Another Federal Science Library |
Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada | MarketWired
- The Race To Digitize Iraqi History Before ISIS Can Get To It | Gizmodo
- Facing Islamic State threat, Iraq digitizes national library | Associated Press
- UNESCO mobilizes the international community to end cultural cleansing in Iraq | UNESCO.org
- Destruction of Antiquities by ISIS Militants Is Denounced | New York Times
- What the Islamic State’s Destruction of Antiquities Means to Archaeologists | New Republic
- Iraq, the Ultimate War Crime: Erasing the History of Mesopotamia. The Destruction of Nineveh | Global Research
- Lost libraries and broken Buddhas: war, iconoclasm and social media | The Art Newspaper
- A Moscow library containing rare UN documents, ancient Slavic texts, and 14 million books is on fire | Quartz
- UNESCO alarmed by news of mass destruction of books in Mosul | UNESCO.org
- National Museum Of Iraq Reopens As ISIS Threat Casts Dark Shadow | Co.Design
- Search Russia Bans Cursing in Movies, Books, Music and Media | Mashable
- Bosnia-Herzegovina fire feared to have destroyed Ottoman archives | The Guardian
- Museums And Heritage Sites In Syria Are Under Siege | Co.Design
- How the Harper Government Committed a Knowledge Massacre | Huffington Post
- Secret Memo Casts Doubt on Feds’ Claims for Science Library Closures | The Tyee
- Thousands of books, manuscripts torched in fire at historic Lebanese library (PHOTOS) | RT
For some members of the Class of 2019, the choice of “Fun Home” as a summer reading book was anything but fun. Several incoming freshmen decided not to read “Fun Home” because its sexual images and themes conflicted with their personal and religious beliefs. Freshman Brian Grasso posted in the Class of 2019 Facebook page July 26 that he would not read the book “because of the graphic visual depictions of sexuality,” igniting conversation among students. The graphic novel, written by Alison Bechdel, chronicles her relationship with her father and her issues with sexual identity. READ MORE: Freshmen skipping ‘Fun Home’ for moral reasons | The Chronicle.
Swearwords in the content (clean images) so consider this post borderline NSFW. READ MORE: Is the New Lady Chatterley’s Lover Adaption Borderline Pornographic? God, We Hope So..
Children’s books about being raised by same-sex parents, including one about a pair of “gay” penguins bringing up a chick, are to be banned in Venice’s schools, as a new mayor stamps a more conservative mark on the World Heritage city. READ MORE: Gay parenting books to be banned from Venice schools | Telegraph.
Here are 50 films that challenged censors. READ MORE: 50 Essential NC-17 Films | Flavorwire.
A student enrolled at Crafton Hills College has protested the inclusion of a number of graphic novels in the curriculum for her English 250 course. Tara Shultz, along with her parents and friends have called for the “eradic[ation] [of the books] from the system,” and have complained to the College’s administrators over their inclusion.
One of the most hurtful things you can say to a comic book reader is that comic books are for kids.
It’s a chilling insult that the stuff they read — the stuff they love — never advanced beyond its funny-page beginnings. But it’s also — often unknown to comics fans — a blunt reminder of one of the worst things to ever happen to comic books.
Some 60 years ago, during the era of McCarthyism, comic books became a threat. The panic culminated in a Senate hearing in 1954. This, of course, isn’t to say that McCarthyism and the comic book panic were comparable in their human toll. But they share the same symptoms of American fear and a harsh, reactive response to it.
The reaction to the suspected scourge was the Comics Code — a set of rules that spelled out what comics could and couldn’t do. Good had to triumph over evil. Government had to be respected. Marriages never ended in divorce. And it was in the best interests of publishers to remain compliant.
What adults thought was best for children ended up censoring and dissolving away years of progress and artistry, as well as comics that challenged American views on gender and race. Consequently, that cemented the idea that this was a medium for kids — something that we’ve only recently started disbelieving.
By SINAN SALAHEDDIN and SAMEER N. YACOUB
Posted: Jan 31, 2015 12:12 AM MST
Updated: Jan 31, 2015 2:33 AM MST
BAGHDAD (AP) – When Islamic State group militants invaded the Central Library of Mosul earlier this month, they were on a mission to destroy a familiar enemy: other people’s ideas.
Residents say the extremists smashed the locks that had protected the biggest repository of learning in the northern Iraq town, and loaded around 2,000 books – including children’s stories, poetry, philosophy and tomes on sports, health, culture and science – into six pickup trucks. They left only Islamic texts…READ MORE: Iraqi libraries ransacked by Islamic State group in Mosul | FOX5 Vegas | KVVU
While it would be great if we were past the whole “banning books” thing, the fact remains that hundreds of books have their places in libraries or on school reading lists challenged each year.
According to the American Library Association, books are most commonly challenged for being “sexually explicit” or containing “offensive language.” But some of the books that are most often challenged are also literary classics, containing storylines that almost everyone can learn from.
In honor of Banned Books Week 2014, we’ve pulled together a list of controversial books that every woman should read. They cover sexual freedom and women pushing back against prescribed roles, oppression against women and people of color, and what it means to be a woman in different places and times. Above all, they are stories well told.