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Banned Book Club! Margaret Atwood: The Handmaid’s Tale

Belsize Community Library’s book club looks at literature through the lens of censorship.

Every third Wednesday of the month, at 7pm, they meet to discuss a different banned book. Some have been banned by censors in the UK, some by other governments or organisations. Why were these books banned? What effect did it have on the book’s reception and the wider society that banned it? What relevance does the book have to us?

For each session they invite a guest participant whose area of expertise will help us to appreciate the book – not just as a document of censorship, but on its own literary merits.

This month, as preparation for UK Banned Books Week (22nd-28th September), they’ve invited Index on Censorship to come and talk about literary censorship and their work defending free speech worldwide.

They’ll also be discussing Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, which has been both challenged and celebrated. It has been banned and restricted by some schools in the US, but used as a A-level set text in the UK – and now is the basis for a very successful TV series.


11 September
– 8
Belsize Community Library
Antrim Grove
Belsize Park
Free, no registration necessary
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