Books by black authors are banned due to critical race theory


As the fight for critical race theory continues in American schools, black authors say their works are caught in the crossfire.

Newbery Medal-winning author jerry craft Recount NBCBLK he was shocked to learn that several of his titles had been removed from a school library in Katy, Texas. Critics, mostly patrons and parents, claim that Craft’s class act and critically acclaimed new child taught children critical race theory.

“I was caught off guard,” Craft says. “I felt bad for the kids because I know how much they love ‘New Kid’ and ‘Class Act’. I know what my school visits are doing. … I felt bad if there were any children who could not enjoy it.”

His virtual visit to the city’s Independent School District was also postponed following backlash from school officials against critical race theory in the curriculum.

Even though Craft’s books were eventually banned in the school district, it’s part of a larger problem affecting black writers across the country. Their works are being removed from school libraries because people assume it teaches critical race theory when the works are simply written by and about people of color, according to reporters.

The American Library Association (ALA) found that 273 books were affected by censorship attempts in 2020. Many of these titles contained content highlighting race, gender and sexuality, researchers said. There were at least 230 challenges in September alone, the organization told NBCBLK.

Deborah CaldwellStone, the director of the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom, called the challenges a violation of First Amendment rights.

“We are discouraged that there is this organized campaign to remove the voices of marginalized communities from the shelves of school libraries,” Caldwell-Stone said. “We are especially discouraged that elected officials who have a duty to uphold the Constitution and the Bill of Rights are also continuing their efforts to remove these books.”

You can read more about the situation here.

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