books-web.jpgWEST PALM BEACH — The West Palm Beach Library Foundation will host an essay contest for Palm Beach County high school students in conjunction with its upcoming exhibition, Banned and Burned: Literary Censorship and the Loss of Freedom.

The contest invites students to explore the history of censorship in the United States, the book burnings that took place as part of the Nazi movement in 1933, and the First Amendment rights guaranteed under the U.S. Constitution.  

Featured will be the traveling exhibition from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Fighting the Fires of Hate: America and the Nazi Book Burnings. 

Students will also be required to read a book from a list of books banned from various cities and states across America, including classics such as The Scarlet Letter, Gone with the Wind and The Lord of the Flies to more recent releases including Jaws and the Harry Potter series.  Students should discuss how the book influenced them and why it should be protected. They must visit the exhibition and discuss its impact from a personal perspective. Essays must be 500 – 1,000 words and submitted by Dec. 31. 

Ninth and 10th grade students will compete for first and second place awards valued at $500 and $250; and 11th and 12th grade students will compete for first and second place awards of $1,000 and $500. 

For other information call 561-868-7715 or visit