Literaure about censorship?
October 27, 2011 8:46 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for books, poems, and plays on the topic of censorship -- but all I'm finding online is tons of lists of "banned books." Can anyone help?

I'm assisting a friend with some research, and she's already got the typical titles on her list -- Farenheit 451, for example.

But does anyone know of some lesser-known titles, perhaps, of literature dealing with the topic of censorship?

Novels, short stories, poems, plays . . . any genre is fine.
posted by Annabelle74 to Writing & Language (18 answers total)
Would you include kids' books? Because "The Day They Came to Arrest the Book" by Nat Hentoff is quite good.
posted by Perodicticus potto at 8:58 AM on October 27, 2011

Gross Indecency by Moisès Kaufman is an interesting theatrical look at the censorship and downfall of Oscar Wilde, from the playwright/creator of The Laramie Project.
posted by mykescipark at 8:59 AM on October 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

Also, if you are including children's books, try Betty Miles's Maudie and Me and the Dirty Book.
posted by dlugoczaj at 9:05 AM on October 27, 2011

It's an unconventional choice, but I once did a paper on censorship and Footloose. I got an A.
posted by shesbookish at 9:11 AM on October 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

I don't know this because I've only seen the film (Field of Dreams) and not read the book, but does Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella have a subplot about censorship? The film does--about a fictionalized author and not the version of J. D. Salinger who actually appears in the book--but I don't know if that was translated from the book or is a totally new addition to the screenplay. Might be worth a look.
posted by dlugoczaj at 9:23 AM on October 27, 2011

Again with the kids' and YA books: this list of Ten Books About Censorship for Kids and Teens may be helpful.
posted by collectallfour at 9:32 AM on October 27, 2011

Sinclair Lewis It Can't Happen Here

It's more about fascism and dictatorship, but it has a censorship subtext.

posted by Billiken at 9:41 AM on October 27, 2011

Some interstng articles aand booklists from Canada's 2011 Freedom to Read week.
posted by saucysault at 10:01 AM on October 27, 2011

Milton's "Areopagitica" --

"Areopagitica: A speech of Mr. John Milton for the liberty of unlicensed printing to the Parliament of England is a 1644 prose polemical tract by English author John Milton against censorship. Areopagitica is among history's most influential and impassioned philosophical defences of the principle of a right to freedom of speech and expression, which was written in opposition to licensing and censorship and is regarded as one of the most eloquent defences of press freedom ever written."
-- Source: Wikipedia
posted by maurreen at 10:29 AM on October 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

Also try librarians and searching Amazon and searching with "site:edu." The last will search only educational sites.
posted by maurreen at 10:31 AM on October 27, 2011

A place you might find some stuff is on LibraryThing, using their tag search. Here, for example, are the results from a tag search for censorship +fiction. It has some of the obvious ones on it, but also some others that may not be as immediately front-of-mind.

Digging through just censorship could turn up some other results, but there are a lot of books on there that are lists of books that are censored, too.
posted by urbanlenny at 10:39 AM on October 27, 2011

I searched WorldCat for you - see if this list sparks any ideas...

(I searched for non-juvenile fiction with subjects that included 'censorship')
posted by hms71 at 11:01 AM on October 27, 2011 [2 favorites]

Slight but nifty lipogrammatic novel Ella Minnow Pea is a censorship parable.
posted by longtime_lurker at 5:05 PM on October 27, 2011

Monty Python: The Case Against offers a detailed look at the censorship of "The Life of Brian".

Also, to follow up hms71's WorldCat search: you can probably search by subject using your local library's online catalog.
posted by kristi at 5:49 PM on October 27, 2011

Girls Lean Back Everywhere: The Law of Obscenity and the Assault on Genius by Edward De Grazia. Such a good book!
posted by knolan at 7:04 PM on October 27, 2011

Haroun and the Sea of Stories by Salman Rushdie
posted by CCCC at 12:31 AM on October 28, 2011

Rhinoceros (French original title Rhinocéros) by Eugène Ionesco.
posted by BusyBusyBusy at 2:06 AM on October 28, 2011

The Giver
posted by Jorus at 2:59 AM on November 1, 2011

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