Talk to Al Jazeera

Tracie Hall: What’s behind the rapid surge in book banning in the US?

The head of the American Library Association discusses whether the ‘land of the free’ will remain so for readers.

Many regard the United States as a superpower. Yet more than 13 percent of adults in the country cannot read or write above third-grade level. That’s the same as an eight-year-old.

Censorship of library books is also on the rise.

The American Library Association reported a record number of demands to censor books last year. The more than 1,600 contested titles address mainly race and gender issues.

With more calls for censorship, the issue has become increasingly politicised. So will the “land of the free” remain so for readers?

Tracie Hall, the executive director of the American Library Association, talks to Al Jazeera.