Named for former librarian Carol Spaziani in honor of her life-long commitment to the freedom of ideas, this an annual event affirms everyone’s right to freedom of thought and expression. ICPL’s celebration of intellectual freedom coincides with Banned Books Week, which will be celebrated September 25 through October 1.
This year’s Intellectual Freedom Festival includes the following programs:
Monday, September 19, 7 to 9 p.m. in Meeting Room A: Documentary – Don’t Look Back
Bob Dylan is captured on-screen as he never would be again in this groundbreaking film from D. A. Pennebaker. The often banned and misunderstood artist was filmed during a tour of England in the early 60’s and, as he has his entire career, leaves his audience scratching their heads in wonder.
Monday, September 26, 7 to 9 p.m. in Meeting Room A: Documentary – Citizenfour
In January 2013, Laura Poitras, an American documentary film director/producer, received an encrypted e-mail from a stranger who called himself Citizenfour. In it, he offered her inside information about illegal wiretapping practices of the U.S. National Security Agency and other intelligence agencies. Poitras traveled to Hong Kong with her camera for the first meeting with the stranger in June 2013. We know him as Edward Snowden.
Tuesday, September 27, 7 to 8 p.m. in Meeting Room A: Book discussion – Hamlet’s Dreams: The Robben Island Shakespeare
Hamlet’s Dreams brings together the Robben Island Prison of Nelson Mandela and the prison that is Denmark for Shakespeare’s Hamlet. David Shalkwyk uses the circulation of the so-called ‘Robben Island Shakespeare, ‘ a copy of the Alexander edition of the Complete Works that was secretly circulated, annotated and signed by a group of Robben Island political prisoner in the 1970s (including Nelson Mandela), to examine the representation and experience of imprisonment in South African prison memoirs and Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
This discussion will be led by Colleen E. Kennedy, visiting assistant professor of English at the University of Iowa. A limited number of Hamlet’s Dreams are available to borrow from the Information Desk on the second floor of the Library.
Wednesday, September 28, 10:30 to 11 a.m. in the Storytime Room: Preschool Banned Books Storytime
Preschoolers will celebrate Banned Books Week by listening to banned or challenged books.
Wednesday, September 28, noon to 1 p.m. in Meeting Room A: XXX: Love Poems
Listen as members of the Iowa City Johnson County Senior Center’s Reading Aloud group share erotic love poems by Ovid, Whitman, Donne, Dickinson, Levertov, and Gunn.
Thursday, September 29, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the Storytime Room: IFF Short Film Festival
Preschoolers will watch several animated shorts of frequently banned or challenged picture books.
All programs are free and open to the public.
For more information about the Iowa City Public Library’s Carol Spaziani Intellectual Freedom Festival, visit icpl.org/iff, or call the Library at 319-356-5200.