The University of Toledo celebrated the right to read Thursday at its Banned Books Week Vigil.
About 30 supporters attended the annual campaign to deny censorship of books and other banned publications at institutions of higher learning. A sign hung on the wall that read, "Get Hooked on a Banned Book."
"We're here to say that free speech should be celebrated, it's part of the democratic process," said Honors Professor of Humanities Glenn Sheldon. He continued, "Censorship is wrong."
A sampling of "banned books" sat atop a table garnished with yellow "Caution" tape. "Water for Elephants," "To Kill A Mockingbird," and the "Gossip Girl" series were all on display and taunted to be read.
Sheldon told WNWO some controversial topics that contribute to censorship include "domestic violence, rape, and homosexuality."
"Students often don't know the history of banning and censorship," said Sheldon. "This offers them an opportunity to understand that a book that was banned this year or last year, this is not a new phenomenon, this has occurred generation after generation."
The University of Toledo will continue Banned Books Week on Friday when Libbey Hall hosts Mark Twain night. The event begins at 7 p.m. and guests will hear from a Mark Twain impersonator.
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