My first instinct is to preserve freedom of speech, that hateful books, even those like Mein Kampf, should be available, as even though the views expressed are disgusting, people still have the right to hold these views. Plus books such as these are historical documents, they are revealing of society and culture.
Some of the reasons for banning books is in my opinion puritanical, sex, drugs and swearing in a book written for adults doesn't bother me. If you are sensitive to these things, the solution is simple - don't read the book. Violence, drug taking and sex in literature isn't promoting these activities, it is just portraying human realities.
|banned for 'promoting' lesbianism|
Also the banning of these books is obviously influenced by homophobia, racism and sexism. The inclusion of many books on the banned list by African-American women such as Toni Morrison and Maya Angelo, is act of misogynoir, Black female sexuality is seen as obscene. I'm sure many more explicit books passed through the censors as they cover white, male, heterosexual sexuality, rather than the experiences of women.
On the other hand- I can completely see why some of the novels have been banned, especially in schools. I am in favour of racial slurs being blanked out, or been moved all together. For example, references to g****w**** or the n-word have been taken out of new editions of Enid Blyton. These words are offensive and inappropriate and should not be read by impressionable children.
This all just my personal opinion of course, and I'll to hear yours! Leave your comments about banned books and censorship in the comments below.