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Bowdler

Page history last edited by PBworks 14 years, 7 months ago

The brother and sister team felt it was their duty to remove the "indecent" passages from Shakespeare's plays, making them more suitable for the general public's consumption. Many critics were, obviously, outraged, but the practice continued, and is still evident today in the recent debate over the accuracy of school history and literatue textbooks. The Bowdlers' "Family Shakespeare," published in 1807 marks one of the first instances of blatant censorship that affected a wide base of readers and professionals.

 

Censorship has always been and is still a big issue for libraries of all kinds, as contentions regarding racial- and gender-sensitive materials have become more frequent in recent decades, especially in children's literature. The importance of fighting censorship in libraries cannot be overstated; it is intrinsic to the purpose of the library (especially public ones) and represents what the library should be.

 

(Bowdlerize = the process of literary expurgation)

 

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