About the Coalition

The Banned Books Week Coalition is an international alliance of diverse organizations joined by a commitment to increase awareness of the annual celebration of the freedom to read. The Coalition seeks to engage various communities and inspire participation in Banned Books Week through education, advocacy, and the creation of programming about the problem of book censorship.

One way to support Banned Books Week and the right to read is to patronize these organizations. Keep reading to find out about the members of the coalition and how you can champion their work.

Sponsors

American Booksellers Association / American Booksellers for Free Expression
Founded in 1900, the American Booksellers Association is a national not-for-profit trade organization that works to help independently owned bookstores grow and succeed. The Association actively supports and defends free speech and the First Amendment rights of all Americans through the American Booksellers for Free Expression (ABFE). Its mission is to promote and protect the free exchange of ideas, particularly those contained in books, by opposing restrictions on the freedom of speech; issuing statements on significant free expression controversies; participating in legal cases involving First Amendment rights; collaborating with other groups with an interest in free speech; and providing education about the importance of free expression to booksellers, other members of the book industry, politicians, the press and the public.

American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom
The American Library Association (ALA) is the foremost national organization providing resources to inspire library and information professionals to transform their communities through essential programs and services. Established December 1, 1967, ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) is charged with implementing ALA policies concerning the concept of intellectual freedom as embodied in the Library Bill of Rights, the Association’s basic policy on free access to libraries and library materials. OIF publishes an annual list of the Top Ten Most Challenged Books, using information from public challenges reported in the media, as well as censorship reports submitted to the office through its challenge reporting form.

Association of University Presses
Since 1937, the Association of University Presses advances the essential role of a global community of publishers whose mission is to ensure academic excellence and cultivate knowledge. The Association holds integrity, diversity, stewardship, and intellectual freedom as core values. AUPresses is an organization of more than 140 international nonprofit scholarly publishers. AUPresses members are active across many scholarly disciplines, including the humanities, arts, and sciences, publish significant regional and literary work, and are innovators in the world of digital publishing.

Comic Book Legal Defense Fund
Comic Book Legal Defense Fund is a non-profit organization protecting the freedom to read comics! Our work protects readers, creators, librarians, retailers, publishers, and educators who face the threat of censorship. We monitor legislation and challenge laws that would limit the First Amendment. We create resources that promote understanding of comics and the rights our community is guaranteed. Every day we publish news and information about censorship events as they happen. We are partners in the Kids’ Right to Read Project and Banned Books Week. Our expert legal team is available to respond to First Amendment emergencies at a moment’s notice. CBLDF is a lean organization that works hard to protect the rights on which our community depends.

Dramatists Legal Defense Fund
The Dramatists Guild created the Dramatists Legal Defense Fund to advocate, to educate, and to provide a resource in defense of the First Amendment and on behalf of a robust public domain. DLDF advocates not only for writers, but for theaters and other theater artists, as well as audiences, schools, students, and the culture at large, all of which are confronting censorship and other related issues of public import, including the diminishment of the public domain. DLDF also aids indigent artists who cannot defend themselves. This aid and advocacy may take the form of letters, articles, and lectures in public fora, intervention in litigation through amicus briefs and expert testimony, or finding affordable representation for those caught up in these disputes.

Freedom to Read Foundation
The Freedom to Read Foundation deals with a wide range of issues affecting our freedom of speech and our right to access information. A growing part of our mission is to educate librarians, library patrons, and the general public about issues related to the freedom to read. The Freedom to Read Foundation is dedicated to assisting librarians, teachers, and community members when they are confronted with attempts to remove or otherwise censor library materials. FTRF promotes the ability to engage in free inquiry, to consider different ideas and perspectives, and to research for more and better information as essential to a healthy democracy. Libraries must remain engaged and vigilant. Libraries are dedicated to promoting this ability. FTRF has helped establish legal precedent that enshrines the right to access information across formats and despite the unpopularity of certain ideas

Index on Censorship
Index on Censorship is a nonprofit that campaigns for and defends free expression worldwide. We publish work by censored writers and artists, promote debate, and monitor threats to free speech. We believe that everyone should be free to express themselves without fear of harm or persecution -- no matter what their views. Index’s aim is to raise awareness about threats to free expression and the value of free speech as the first step to tackling censorship.

National Coalition Against Censorship
The National Coalition Against Censorship (NCAC) promotes freedom of thought, inquiry, and expression and opposes censorship in all its forms. Since 1974, we have engaged in direct advocacy, education, research and analysis to support the principles of the First Amendment. A coalition of over 50 national non-profits, our alliance includes literary, artistic, education and civil liberties groups. We are national in scope, but often local in our approach, engaging with a nationwide network of advocates and supporting local activism. We work with community members to resolve censorship controversies without the need for litigation.

National Council of Teachers of English
The National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) supports teachers and their students in classrooms, on college campuses, and in online learning environments. For more than 100 years, NCTE has worked with its members to offer journals, publications, and resources; to further the voice and expertise of educators as advocates for their students at the local and federal levels; and to share lesson ideas, research, and teaching strategies through its Annual Convention and other professional learning events.

People For the American Way Foundation
People For the American Way and its affiliate, People For the American Way Foundation, are progressive advocacy organizations founded to fight right-wing extremism and defend constitutional values under attack, including free expression, religious liberty, equal justice under the law, and the right to meaningfully participate in our democracy.

Contributors

American Society of Journalists and Authors
Founded in 1948, the American Society of Journalists and Authors is the nation's professional organization of independent nonfiction writers. Our membership consists of outstanding freelance writers of magazine articles, trade books, and many other forms of nonfiction writing, each of whom has met ASJA's exacting standards of professional achievement.

The Authors Guild
The Authors Guild is the nation’s oldest and largest professional organization for writers. Since its beginnings over a century ago, we have served as the collective voice of American authors. Our members include novelists, historians, journalists, and poets—traditionally and independently published—as well as literary agents and representatives of writers’ estates. The Guild advocates for authors on issues of copyright, fair contracts, free speech, and tax fairness, and has initiated lawsuits in defense of authors’ rights, where necessary.

PEN America
PEN America stands at the intersection of literature and human rights to protect open expression in the United States and worldwide. We champion the freedom to write, recognizing the power of the word to transform the world. Our mission is to unite writers and their allies to celebrate creative expression and defend the liberties that make it possible. PEN America, founded in 1922, is the largest of more than 100 centers of PEN International. For more than 90 years, we have been working together with our colleagues in the international PEN community to ensure that people everywhere have the freedom to create literature, to convey information and ideas, to express their views, and to make it possible for everyone to access the views, ideas, and literatures of others.

Project Censored
Project Censored educates students and the public about the importance of a truly free press for democratic self-government. We expose and oppose news censorship, and we promote independent investigative journalism, media literacy, and critical thinking. An informed public is crucial to democracy in at least two basic ways. First, without access to relevant news and opinion, people cannot fully participate in government. Second, without media literacy, people cannot evaluate for themselves the quality or significance of the news they receive. Censorship undermines democracy. Project Censored’s work—including our annual book, weekly radio broadcasts, campus affiliates program, and additional community events—highlights the important links among a free press, media literacy and democratic self-government.

Banned Books Week is endorsed by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress.

Banned Books Week also receives generous support from DKT Liberty Project and Penguin Random House.