Rationale of the Dirty Joke by G. Legman

G. Legman and the Bawdy Eclectic

A fierce opponent of censorship, Gershon Legman helped legitimize the academic study of erotic folklore as manifested in jokes, limericks, and songs.
“The Obscene M.D.” Colored lithograph. Morality of Modern Medicine Mongers. British College of Health, 1852.

Putting an End to Obscene Quackery

When medical professionals joined anti-vice campaigners to censor publications about sex in the 1800s, they found themselves wielding a double-edged sword.
Ulysses

Ulysses Obscenity Decision: Annotated

In December 1933, Judge John Woolsey issued what would become one of the best known legal decisions on obscenity in United States history.
A Video Player interface with a tv rating in its center

Film and TV Ratings in the Streaming Age

We've got Netflix, AppleTV, YouTube, and Prime literally in the palms of our hands. Do conventional movie and television rating systems matter to us?
The 1939 first edition cover of The Grapes of Wrath

Banning The Grapes of Wrath in 1939 California

The Kern County, CA Board of Supervisors got a lesson in the Streisand Effect back in 1939, when they banned The Grapes of Wrath from their libraries and schools.
A photograph of the blue cover of the first edition, 1st printing of the book Ulysses by James Joyce, 1922

Censoring Ulysses

In reviewing the UK Home Office files on James Joyce's Ulysses, a historian found baffled officials afraid to bring more attention to it.
a passenger on the London Underground, reading D H Lawrence's 'Lady Chatterley's Lover'

Would You Let Your Servant Read This Book?

How the ban on D. H. Lawrence's book Lady Chatterley's Lover was reversed.
American feminist, abolitionist, journalist and writer Lydia Maria Child

Lydia Maria Child and the American Way of Censorship

Facing ostracism by literary elites and attacks from pro-slavery mobs, an abolitionist blunted her politics.
Parental Advisory label

Parental Advisory: The Story of a Warning Label

Songs weren't always labeled for explicit lyrics. The history of how it all came about includes some unlikely bedfellows.
The covers for "The Bluest Eye" and "Beloved" by Toni Morrison and "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" by Maya Angelou

Censorship Leaves Us in the Dark

Books and other art are often censored for covertly racist reasons.