The boundary between aesthetics and prurience has ebbed and flowed throughout history. And today’s anti-obscenity legal landscape is evidence of this undying wave cresting in our modern day. But perhaps if we break historical barriers, and view this as a relationship without walls, calmer waters surely lie ahead.
Very much to the chagrin of advocates for intellectual freedom and champions against censorship everywhere, the book was pulled and made unavailable to any readers in that particular system. There’s really no two ways to argue what transpired: Information had been stifled and barriers erected to prevent it from reaching the public.
While artwork can be painted over, history can’t be dismantled for the sake of convenience. Erasure is endemic when it comes to censorship. Intellectual freedom is under siege when the option of destroying artwork is proposed. And there’s nothing more ahistorical and devoid of thought than a sterile freshly-painted white wall.
In the fourth installment in the Intellectual Freedom Fighters Series, see how Reporters Without Borders protects freedom of the press and how journalism overlaps with library science.
The incarcerated are an oft-forgotten demographic, but this quality shouldn’t dampen their fundamental human-rights. For US prisoners, access to library materials is wrought with roadblocks built by a tumultuous past.
The artist himself has submitted that the removal of his mural was a form of artistic censorship at its very worse and found irony in the asinine foofaraw of an institution charged with supporting and promoting art, quite conversely, destroying it.
Rather than using their positions as legislators to exert governmental power where local control and educational expertise are more appropriate, I encourage legislators to leave the work of book selection or rejection to the expertise of educators and librarians.
By: guest contributor and author M. Earl Smith – In the United States, there is a group that, sadly, ties patriotism into a fervent, almost cult-like devotion to certain figures, ideas, and symbols…Yet the second that someone presents the work of someone who views the world differently than the American Dream myth, they are either shouted down or they are, ironically, twisted, contorted, and used to continue that ethos.
A library-fueled regaling of a nearly vanquished iconic Los Angeles mural and the topsy-turvy tale of its fruition.
The State of America’s Libraries 2019 report includes a snapshot of censorship in libraries, schools and universities; who initiates challenges, where are they taking place, and what are the reasons?