Books are still being banned every day, but do you know which of the great classics have been banned? Books are controversial because of language, politics, sexuality, or religion. Some books seem to be challenged or banned because of multiple objections from different types of censors. Here's a list of ten...
1. Ulysses - James Joyce
Published in 1918, James Joyce's Ulysses was banned on sexual grounds. Leopold Bloom sees a woman on the seashore, and his actions during that event have been considered controversial. Also, Bloom thinks about his wife's affair, as he walks through Dublin, Ireland on a famous day (we now know it as Bloomsday). In 1922, 500 copies of the book were burned by the United States Department of the Post Office.
2. Adventures of Huckleberry Finn - Mark Twain
Published in 1884, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain has been banned on social grounds. Concord Public Library called the book "trash suitable only for the slums," when it first banned the novel in 1885. The references and treatment of African Americans in the novel reflect the time about which it was written, but some critics have thought such language inappropriate for study and reading in schools and libraries.
3. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
Published in 1857, Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary was banned on sexual grounds. In the trial, Imperial Advocate Ernest Pinard said, "No gauze for him, no veils--he gives us nature in all her nudity and crudity." Madame Bovary is a woman full of dreams--without any hope of finding a reality that will fulfill her hopes. She marries a provincial doctor, tries to find love in all the wrong places, and eventually brings about her own ruination. In the end, she escapes in the only way she knows how. This novel is an exploration of the life of a woman who dreams too large. Here adultery and other actions have been controversial.
Brave New World has been banned with complaints about the language used, as well morality issues. Brave New World is a satirical novel, with a stringent division of the classes, drugs, and free love.
Moll Flanders was one of the earliest novels. The book dramatically depicts the life and misadventures of a young girl, who becomes a prostitute. The book has been challenged on sexual grounds.