The largely forgotten book ban case that went up to the Supreme Court

May 22, 2023

© Bob Daugherty/AP; AP Kurt Vonnegut’s “Slaughterhouse-Five” was among the books banned in the school board decision at the center of Island Trees v. Pico, which went to the Supreme Court. Yet only one previous case of a library book ban has ended up before the Supreme Court: Island Trees Union Free School District No. The country was engulfed then, as now, in a debate over which books should be allowed in schools and libraries. In 1979, the district court ruled in favor of the school board. Over the summer of 1982, 1,200 Island Trees parents petitioned to return the banned books to the library shelves.