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‘Rapid acceleration’ in US school book censorship leads to 2,500 bans in a year

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There is a “rapid acceleration” of book censorship occurring across the US, with more than 2,500 different book bans taking place over the past school year, a new report has found.

A total of 1,648 individual book titles, many of them that mention issues relating to race or sexuality, were the subject of bans by school districts in 32 states in the last school year, according to the new analysis.

More than 5,000 schools nationally have had books barred from access by students in libraries and classrooms, according to the report compiled by Pen America, a non-profit that supports freedom of expression in literature.

There has been a “proliferation of organized efforts to advocate for book removals”, the report states, from rightwing politicians in states such as Texas, Georgia and Wisconsin to at least 50 groups that have sprung up either in-person or on Facebook.