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Banned Books

Banned Books at the University of Chicago

Every year, the American Library Association compiles a list of the Top 10 Most Challenged Books and announces the past year's list on Right to Read Day during National Library Week in April.

The top 5 from 2023 (and many more) can be found at the UChicago Library and are linked below. To view the rest of the list, see the ALA Top Most Challenged Books List.

Banned Book Events at UChicago

Stay tuned for Banned Book programming at the UChicago Library

UChicago Banned Book Initiative

The University of Chicago Library is building a comprehensive collection of books banned across the U.S. Our intention is to help address the growing trend of censorship, lower barriers to sharing information, and support open inquiry and discourse. It will serve as a tool for researchers exploring the intersection of censorship and book bans as well as a way for the public to engage with banned books. The growing collection is available for consultation at the UChicago Library by the public, for check out by UChicago users, and for borrowing through Interlibrary Loan.

“We believe that knowledge enriches life, and book bans stand against freedom of inquiry and expression and therefore against the core principles of the University of Chicago.” - Torsten Reimer, University Librarian and Dean of the University Library

The Banned Book Club

More than 900 ebooks are available for free through the Digital Public Library of America’s Banned Book Club on the Palace e-reader app to people in areas where the books have been banned and to everyone in Illinois, through the support of our Library.

Follow these instructions to access The Banned Book Club on The Palace Project App:

  1. Download The Palace App on Google Play (Android) or through The App Store (Apple)
  2. Search for “Banned Book Club.”
  3. Click on the Settings gear icon in the lower right corner.
  4.  Click on Libraries, then Banned Book Club.
  5. At the login screen, Click on Create Card.
  6. Click “Allow Once” when prompted to allow Palace to use your location.
  7. Follow the instructions to create your virtual library card.
  8. Check your email and click the verification link.
  9. Return to the Palace app and log in using the library barcode number found in the verification email and the password you created.
  10. Download your first book!

More information on The Banned Book Club can be found here.

Reporters with questions about the Library’s Banned Book Initiative, please contact Library Communications at