The Witches by Roald Dahl

by Banned Library in

The Witches
By Roald Dahl

When a young boy meets up with some witches, he might be losing his damn mind. Roald Dahl, you so crazy!


#22 ALA Banned List, 1990-199

perceived misogyny. Dahl says that witches can only be women. "I do not wish to speak badly about women," the author writes. "Most women are lovely. But the fact remains that all witches are women. There is no such thing as a male witch. On the other hand, a ghoul is always a male... both are dangerous.  But neither of them is half as dangerous as a REAL WITCH."

"the children misbehave and take retribution on the adults and there's never, ever a consequence for their actions"

Devalues the life of a child

1987 - Amana, Iowa for being “too sophisticated and did not teach moral values”

1989 - Billings, Montana attempt was made wherein Dahl commented the parents had no sense of humor

1990 - Goose Lake, Iowa for violence, mouse turning, and the word “slut”

1991 - Dallas, Oregon for possiblity of turning kids to witchcraft or the occult


Escondido, California for fear of desensitizing kids to violence and increasing the interest in witchcraft

La Mesa-Spring Valley, California for depiction of witches as ordinary women that children cannot defend against and promoting Wiccan and witchcraft


Spenser, Wisconsin for desensitizing children to crimes related to witchcraft

Pennsylvania - Challenged at Pine Forge Elementary School in Boyertown area

1994 - Challenged but retained in Battle Creek, Michigan despite a parent claiming it is “satanic.”

1995 - Stafford, Virginia for “crude language” and encouraging children to be disobediant

1997 - Wichita Falls, Texas for satanic themes

1998 - Dublin, Ohio - “derogatory to children, hurtful to self-esteem, and conflicted with the the [challenger’s] family’s religious and moral beliefs.”


Christian Science Monitor



LA Trobe University


Karolides, Nicholas J. et al. 120 Banned Books: Censorship Histories of World Literature. Checkmark Books, 1997. pg 314-320.

Doyle, Robert P. Banned Books: Challenging Our Freedom to Read. American Library Association, 2014. pg 145.

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