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Book bans are never just about books

39 minutes

Book bans are nothing new in the United States, but  our guest this week says the current movement to restrict access to books about race and gender has a different flavor than bans in previous eras. Rather than coming from individual parents or from the ground up in a community, demands to ban dozens or even hundreds of books at a time are coming from state legislators or national parent groups who circulate lists of books online. This trend is troubling for free speech and for the democratic processes that govern how students access information in schools.  

Joining us to unpack what's happening and what we can do about is Jonathan Friedman, director of free expression and education at PEN America. He oversees advocacy, analysis, and outreach concerning educational communities and academic institution and drives PEN America’s efforts to catalyze a more informed, civic culture through education and advocacy for the rising generation and the general public.

Additional Information

PEN America's report on book bans

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Start listening to Citizenship, patriotism, and democracy in the classroom
33:55
Start listening to Citizenship, patriotism, and democracy in the classroom
33:55