In general, books are banned only when they break some clearly defined taboo — bad language, explicit sex, racist language, and so on. My books present no easily demonstrated target for banning.

In the U.S., in this century, books can only be banned in schools, and you usually hear about it only when the books in question are classics like Huckleberry Finn, To Kill a Mockingbird, or The Catcher in the Rye.

Ishmael has occasionally been banned from use in specific schools or courses, but you don’t hear about it because this isn’t newsworthy, since it’s not a household word. Most often it’s banned in what might be called a passive way. For example, a teacher might want to use one of my books in a class but knows that it would probably cause problems with the parents, and so refrains from using it.

ID: 595
updated: 18 Jan 2003