EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WLAX/WEUX) – This week is Banned Books Week; a nationwide initiative where local libraries display books that have been banned from schools.

Local libraries are using Banned Books Week to spread the message about books that have been taken off school shelves or challenged by a community member. Jennifer Cook a general studies librarian at CVTC says challenged books have increased by over 30% since 2021.

Dr. Sue Fondrie, a professor in The Department of Education for Equity and Justice at UWEC, explains the difference between banned and challenged books. She says, “Banned books are books that have actually been censored and removed from shelves. And then the other type of book is a challenging book where somebody says, I don’t really like the idea of my child reading this book, so I’m going to put a challenge forward to the library or to the school district. And the goal of that is to stop their child from reading it or interacting with it in the classroom.”

Popular books that are banned include Harry Potter, The Diary of Anne Frank, and Little Women.