Date Approved

5-10-2007

Embargo Period

3-29-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in School and Public Librarianship

Department

Special Educational Services/Instruction

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Shontz, Marilyn

Subject(s)

Censorship--New Jersey; Libraries--Censorship--New Jersey

Disciplines

Library and Information Science

Abstract

It is essential that young adults have access to books that are of interest to them, regardless of controversy that may surround such titles. The purpose of this study was to determine the existence of commonly banned young adult (YA) books in the library collections of traditional public high schools in Gloucester County. A significant lack of such books may be a sign that censorship or self-censorship has hindered the development of the collection, thereby robbing students of their freedom to read.

The researcher searched the OPACs of thirteen traditional public high schools for thirty-seven predetermined titles. The titles that were searched for were selected by compiling the titles listed in the ALA publications Hit List: Frequently Challenged Books for Young Adults (1996) and Hit List for Young Adults 2. Frequently Challenged Books (2002). The researcher obtained data in three ways: through remote access to the online catalog, through the JerseyCat database, and through on-site visitations. A total of 481 title searches were completed. The results of the study indicated that some form of censorship may have occurred in four of the thirteen libraries.

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