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Banned! Panel Discussion on Book Bans, Censorship, and Citizenship


The growing movement to ban books from K-12 schools and public libraries has come to California, with heated debates over titles, processes, and the right of students to learn from a diversity of voices and perspectives about topics both controversial and utterly mundane. This year, UC Irvine is spotlighting the university’s commitment to freedom of speech as a bedrock value of both the university and America’s constitutional system.

To bring deeper understanding of the incredible rise in book banning—with over 100 titles being removed from school libraries each month—the School of Social Sciences and UCI Libraries are pleased to host a panel discussion with noted authors of children’s and young adult books whose works have been banned, and with PEN America, a nonprofit founded in 1922 working to defend and celebrate free expression in the United States and worldwide.

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

5:30–7:00 pm: Panel Discussion
 7:00–7:30 pm: Reception

School of Business 1 (SB1)
, 1st floor auditorium



  • ELANA K. ARNOLD, UCI alumna and author of Printz Honor winner Damsel, the National Book Award finalist What Girls Are Made Of, and Global Read Aloud selection A Boy Called Bat and its sequels
  • ELIOT SCHREFER, New York Times-bestselling author and winner of the Stonewall Honor for best LGBTQIA+ teen book and the Printz Honor for best young adult book from the American Library Association. His books include Endangered, Threatened, and The Lost Rainforest Series.
  • BRANDY COLBERT, author of Pointe, The Only Black Girls in Town, Stonewall Book Award winner Little & Lion, and Boston Globe–Horn Book Award for Nonfiction winner Black Birds in the Sky: The Story and Legacy of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre
  • ALLISON LEE, PEN America’s Los Angeles Director
  • BILL MAURER, moderator and Dean, School of Social Sciences




Looking for a great read? Visit UCI Libraries' Banned Books digital bookshelf and celebrate the Freedom to Read!

Wednesday, October 25, 2023
5:30pm - 7:30pm
School of Business 1 (SB1)
  Alumni     Faculty     General Public     Graduate Students     Staff     Undergraduate Students  
  Book Discussion     Diversity and Inclusion     Donor Event     Lecture/Presentations     Speakers     Special Events  

Sponsored by UCI School of Social Science and UCI Libraries


For questions about this or other UCI Libraries events, please contact partners@uci.edu.


Event located in School of Business 1 (SB1) 1st floor auditorum, near the Social Sciences Parking Structure (4502 Campus Dr., Irvine, CA 92612).

Parking permits are required on the UCI campus at all times. For campus maps and parking rates, see the UCI Parking Permits webpage. Guests are encouraged to preregister for campus permits to avoid lines at the parking structure.