University Relations and Marketing

Brent Roberts, Library Director, 657-1655
Dan Carter, University Relations, 657-2269

September 29, 2010

Banned Books Week presentation at MSU Billings highlights freedom to read

Display at library encourages faculty, staff, students to not be a robot and ‘think for yourself’

banned books display at the MSUB libraryMSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — Classics such as John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath,” J.D. Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye,”  and William Faulkner’s “As I Lay Dying” would have been banned from public libraries by those opposed to the subject matter if people hadn’t made a stand for intellectual freedom. In Montana, books like “Fools Crow” and even German church songbooks have faced challenges.

At 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 30,  Amy Cannata, ACLU of Montana communications director, will make a presentation at the Montana State University Billings Library about book banning nationwide, Montana’s history of book challenges and efforts to protect the intellectual freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment. It is part of Banned Books Week, a nationwide effort to celebrate the freedom to read. The week is noted with educational displays at the MSU Billings Library.

All participants will be given a “Too Dangerous for the Big Sky?” poster produced by the ACLU of Montana, which can be viewed on the ACLU website ( 

Cannata is the communications director for the ACLU of Montana, where she spearheaded efforts to produce the “Too Dangerous For the Big Sky?” poster. Before moving to Montana, she worked as a newspaper reporter in Spokane for 14 years, where she developed a passionate love for the First Amendment.

For more information about the presentation or the Banned Books Week display, contact the MSU Billings Library at 657-2262.

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