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Title:From Inferno to Freedom: Censorship in the Chicago Public Library, 1910-1936
Author(s):Novotny, Eric
Subject(s):censorship
intellectual freedom
chicago public library
Inferno
Abstract:In the first decades of the twentieth century, the Chicago Public Library employed a brand of casual candid censorship embraced by its peers. In 1910 the Chicago Tribune favorably reported on a so-called “Book Inferno” in the library; a metaphorical pit where works of questionable merit were hidden from immature readers. Patrons, especially juveniles, needed to convince a librarian of their honorable intentions before being granted access to works in the Inferno. By 1936, the same institution issued a forceful Intellectual Freedom statement that affirmed the right, and the obligation, of the library to provide access to books on any subject of interest to its readers, including controversial works. An examination of the treatment accorded controversial works in the Chicago Public Library in the decades preceding the 1936 Intellectual Freedom statement reveals both continuity and change in attitudes towards censorship.
Issue Date:2014
Publisher:Johns Hopkins University Press and the Graduate School of Library and Information Science. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Citation Info:In Library trends 63 (1) Summer 2014: 27-41.
Genre:Article
Type:Text
Language:English
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/55357
ISSN:0024-2594
DOI:10.1353/lib.2014.0022
Publication Status:published or submitted for publication
Rights Information:Copyright (2014) Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-10-17
2016-09-30


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