Censorship

On Censorship Art and WikiLeaks

Censorship is not just about forbidding discussion of certain facts or limiting the freedom of thought. Our very patterns of thought, emotions, and beliefs can be molded in ways beyond our control, both directly and indirectly. Censorship is indirectly imposed through instilling feelings of guilt and fear through the media and institutions of society. For these reasons, censorship is a violation of human rights. Political discourse and artwork have been subjected to censorship in the same ways for thousands of years.

There are many examples of censorship imposed on artworks of all kinds including books, movies and plays. Sharing a few here will show how censorship can become irrational.

Censorship Moves West

Jillian York of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, writing at al-Jazeera English, notes that Internet censorship is moving westward and becoming a more mainstream notion in various countries.

Key quote:

Most problematically, setting a precedent of blocking websites simply makes it that much easier for a government or ISP to extend filtering as they wish.

Writers Write About Censorship

Excerpt from "Places I Never Meant To Be" Original Stories By Censored Writers; Edited and Introduction by Judy Blume. Blume tells the story of how she circumnavigated the naysayers to read her first book by John O'Hara. Not a new title (2001), but definitely one worth reading.

From the Introduction: When I was growing up I’d heard that if a movie or book was “Banned in Boston” everybody wanted to see it or read it right away. My older brother, for example, went to see such a movie -- The Outlaw, starring Jane Russell -- and I wasn’t supposed to tell my mother. I begged him to share what he saw, but he wouldn’t. I was intensely curious about the adult world and hated the secrets my parents, and now my brother, kept from me.

A few years later, when I was in fifth grade, my mother was reading a novel called A Rage to Live, by John O’Hara, and for the first time (and, as it turned out, the only time) in my life, she told me I was never to look at that book, at least not until I was much older. Once I knew my mother didn’t want me to read it, I figured it must be really interesting! -- Read More

Amazon Removes Some Explicit Yaoi Manga from Kindle Store

From Publisher's Weekly

Amazon has removed several yaoi manga from its Kindle Store and refused to allow others to be offered for Kindle, although the bookseller continues to sell the same manga in print and to offer more explicit erotic books in both formats. Yaoi manga, also known as boys-love or BL, is a popular niche genre in manga that features love stories between two males and can range from softly romantic to sexually explicit.

The manga publisher Digital Manga Publishing announced on its blog Tuesday that two of its books had been removed from the Kindle Store and two more were rejected, and the website The Yaoi Review also reported that several Yaoi Press manga and novels had been removed. At least one non-yaoi erotic graphic novel has also been removed from the Kindle Store this week. Amazon representatives contacted by PW did not answer e-mails or phone calls requesting more information.

Full article

No Love for "Lovingly Alice" as School District Removes Book

A Paradise Valley, AZ mother is upset that her daughter was subjected to Lovingly Alice by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor.

"If you looked on the cover, it's just a very young cute girl on the cover," Lockhart said. "My (incoming) second-grader can pick this book up and think, 'This is a cute book.' There needs to be some sort of warning label."

Officials with the Paradise Valley Unified School District have pulled the book from their shelves.

More from AZCentral.

Piles of books burned in Arizona town

Piles of books burned in FLDS border town
Piles of books — perhaps thousands — intended to be used for a new library were burned over the weekend in the polygamous community that borders Utah.

"There is a bonfire outside that clearly has books that have burned in it," Wyler said. "I can't say every book has been burned, because I haven't seen the inside. I can't get in there to see."

Most Americans Opposed to Banning Any Books

Most Americans Opposed to Banning Any Books

Banning or censoring books has been debated for years. A new Harris Poll shows, however, that a majority of Americans think no books should be banned completely (56%) while fewer than one in five say there are books which should be banned (18%); a quarter are not at all sure (26%). The older and less educated people are, the more likely they are to say that there are some books which should be banned completely. Opinions on banning books are linked to political philosophy: almost three quarters of Liberals (73%) say no books should be banned, compared to six in ten Moderates (60%) but only two in five Conservatives (41%) who say no books should be banned.

The Misinformation Age: What Happens When A Headline Goes Viral

Article opens with some mention of the power and speed with which social media operates. The article then continues: A news item suddenly creates an opportunity, or a celebrity meltdown jeopardizes a planned book. And in the sudden viral spread of a headline, facts are often the first casualty.

At Running Press, we faced this firsthand just last week. Third-party error and miscommunication went viral and led to the spread of untrue accusations of intolerance and censorship.

Full piece in Publisher's Weekly

A Book's Banning Sparks a Struggle over Gandhi's Legacy

Sir Ben Kingsley in a universally acclaimed bio-epic? Definitely not this time around.

Joseph Lelyveld's new biography of Mahatma Gandhi, Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi And His Struggle With India hasn't even hit bookstores in India, but it has already unleashed a firestorm of controversy.

The state of Gujarat, where the icon of the Indian Independence movement was born, has already banned the book. There are some Indian leaders now calling for a national boycott of Great Soul, the latest work by the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who once covered India for The New York Times.

Full story

Syndicate content