Your Right to Books, Art and History
Celebrate It @ Broward County Libraries During Banned Book Week/National Arts & Humanities Month
Restriction of free thought and free speech is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily defeat us.”—Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas, 1952
Intellectual freedom is, according to the American Library Association (ALA), “the right to seek, receive, hold and disseminate information from all points of view without restriction. It provides for free access to all expressions of ideas through which any and all sides of a question, cause or movement may be explored.”
Find that freedom at Broward County Libraries (BCL). In the next few weeks, many BCL locations will host events for both Banned Book Week (September 22-28) and National Arts & Humanities Month (October). Libraries have long celebrated everyone’s right to read what they want. Broward County Libraries’ commemoration of Banned Book Week stresses the importance of free and open public access to information and draws awareness of the threat of censorship.
Censorship doesn’t just threaten the freedom to read what you want. It can also limit what movies people see, what art they view, what music they listen to and how they dance (just search online for “twerking” and see what comes up). The arts – visual and performing – are another way to express ideas and are promoted by libraries through art displays and exhibits, performances, concerts, film screenings and other events. National Arts & Humanities Month is the perfect opportunity to flex your intellectual freedom by attending a free event at your library (see below for full list). If getting there in person isn’t possible, you can check out a DVD of a concert or favorite film (access our catalogs to search) – virtual book displays are now part of BCL’s visual catalog so you’ll instantly see a selection of banned books available at BCL. You can also use your Broward County Library card to access free music downloads and music videos via Freegal.
How Can You Help Defend Intellectual Freedom?
There are a number of ways library advocates can promote and defend intellectual freedom. This list for the American Libraries Association offers great ideas to get started:
- Educate friends, family, and others about the importance of intellectual freedom and how the changing information and technological environment is making the need for intellectual freedom in libraries even more critical.
- Stay up-to-date on legislation and court cases that could affect intellectual freedom in libraries
- Join Library support groups such as the Friends of the Library or the Broward Public Library Foundation.
- Help promote intellectual freedom through literacy: be a Broward County volunteer and teach adult literacy.
Banned Books Week Events @ Broward County Libraries
September 3 – Banned Book Art Contest for Students, ages 12-18, entry forms with contest details available at Tamarac Library
September 18 – Book Bunch: Beloved, by Toni Morrison, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., Northwest Regional Library
September 23 – Celebrate Your Freedom to Read with Banned Books Bingo! Ages 13-18, 1 to 2:30 p.m., Alvin Sherman Southeastern University Alvin Sherman Library, Research, and Information Technology Center
September 23 – Movie and Discussion: Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, 2 to 5 p.m., Main Library
September 23 – Banned Books Open Mic Event, 6 to 7:30 p.m., Jan Moran Collier City Learning Library
September 28 – Teens Read Banned Books! Discussion with snacks, ages 12-18, 2 p.m. Pre-register and choose a book beginning September 3 at Tamarac Library
National Arts & Humanities Month Events @ Broward County Libraries
October 1 - “It's So Margate...” 1 to 3 p.m., Margate Catharine Young Library
October 5 - Star Wars Reads Day Celebration, 10:30 a.m. to 12 noon, Pompano Beach Library
October 5 - Star Wars Trivia Contest, 12:30 to 1 p.m., Pompano Beach Library
October 9 - Original Gospel Music with Zoretta Hopkin, 1 to 2 p.m., Main Library
October 9 - America's Music: A Film History or Our Popular Music from Blues to Bluegrass to Broadway, with Dr. James Cunningham, 2 to 4 p.m., Main Library
October 12 - Harmonies of Hope Musical Showcase, 11 to 11:45 a.m., North Regional/Broward College Library
October 13 - Music for Every Occasion Trio. Classical and contemporary works on flute, violin and cello. Register online, adults, 2 to 3 p.m., Nova Southeastern Alvin Sherman University Library, Research, and Information Technology Center
October 15 - Art Presentation on Women Artists: Feminine Perspective in a Male-Dominated Art World from 17th Century to Modern Era. Presentation by the Museum of Art | Fort Lauderdale, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Galt Ocean Mile Reading Center
October 15 - Musical Tuesdays with Walter Ladden: Classical Music Appreciation Series, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Northwest Regional Library
October 16 - Senior Moments Band Performs music of Tin Pan Alley and Broadway, 1 to 2 p.m., Main Library
October 16 - America's Music: Tin Pan Alley and Broadway, 2 to 4 p.m., Main Library
October 16 - Tween Digital Art for Ages 8 to 11: Create Digital Art to Print and Display. Pre-Registration Begins October 1, space is limited, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m., Tamarac Library
October 19 - Coral Springs Quilters, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Margate Catharine Young Library
October 19 - Fantasy Theatre Factory presents Little Monster Tales, 11 to 11:45 a.m., Weston Library
October 22 - Musical Tuesdays with Walter Ladden: Classical Music Appreciation Series, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Northwest Regional Library
October 23 - Gary Lawrence on Piano and Chris LaBarbera on Trumpet perform Swing Jazz, 1 to 2 p.m., Main Library
October 23 - America's Music: Swing Jazz, 2 to 4 p.m., Main Library
October 24 - Reel to Real Talk: A Film Forum with Prof. Lynne Thorner, 12 noon to 3 p.m., North Regional/Broward College Library
October 27 - National Novel Writing Month Kick-off. Learn how to jumpstart your writing dream. Register online, adults, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Nova Southeastern Alvin Sherman University Library, Research, and Information Technology Center
October 29 - Musical Tuesdays with Walter Ladden Classical Music Appreciation Series, 2 to 3:30 p.m., Northwest Regional Library
October 30 - Matthew Sabatella performs traditional folk songs of the American South that form the foundation for bluegrass and country music, 1 to 2 p.m., Main Library
October 30 - America's Music: Bluegrass and Country Music, 2 to 4 p.m., Main Library