Flintridge Bookstore will host “Let Freedom Read: A Banned Books Week Panel” on Thursday, Oct. 5 at 7 p.m., led by moderator and writer/educator Benin Lemus.
She is joined by Flintridge Bookstore manager/book buyer Robert Gibbs, children’s book author Andrea Loney, and La Cañada Flintridge Public Library manager Mark Totten. From their unique perspectives, panelists will explore this polarizing issue and discuss, among other topics, why books continue to be banned, the harm censorship causes, and their own personal or professional experiences regarding banned or challenged titles.
Lemus says: “Book banning isn’t just about taking books off shelves; it’s about severing our connection to our fellow citizens — the ones we know and the people we will never meet. One of the most powerful outcomes of reading is that it creates a sense of unity that has the capacity to change us for the better. When we read, we become more fully realized people. We must guard that right at all costs.”
Banned Books Week is an annual event celebrating the freedom to read. It was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. The national event highlights the value of free and open access to information.
Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community — librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, authors and readers of all types — in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.
For more information, contact Gail Mishkin at email@example.com or (818)790-0717. Flintridge Bookstore is at 858 Foothill Blvd., La Cañada Flintridge 91011, at the intersection of Foothill Boulevard and Beulah Drive. There is street parking on Foothill and Beulah, and a parking lot with limited spots behind the store off of Beulah.
First published in the September 14 print issue of the Outlook Valley Sun.