Censorship on Books and Magazines In the West

There are loads of magazines worldwide to choose from. Even with the sluggish economy, magazines are still selling either in print form or on the Internet. There is just as much variety in magazines as there is creativity to come up on with ideas for publications.  The variety of magazines ranges from political to adult magazines. Some of these magazines are more daring than others.  However, having said that, freedom of speech is not without censorship.  Guess what, there are even magazines and other publications on banned books and magazines.

Throughout time and in several countries many books and magazines have either been banned or have had to go underground.  In the United States serious hardcore magazines have been banned from public viewing.  The American Hardcore A Tribal History, by Steve Blush, for example has been banned in Colorado state prisons. Similarly the Texas State Prison system has also banned several books and magazines although how many have been banned at this point have not become public knowledge.

American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expansion http://www.abffe.org/ publishes a magazine and highlights expositions and events on banned books in the West, more info is given at this website:  www.bannedbooksweek.org,

Random House Inc produces a free educational magazine its theme is Censorship and banned books.

Canada has banned several magazines in the rent decades. You can acquire this list at http://www.freedomtoread.ca/censorship_in_canada/challenged_books.asp

The aim was to limit public access especially in schools and libraries.  Some of these bans were successful and the magazines were taken off the market and some still remained.  The UK had several publications also mostly defunct today.

The counterculture in North America had its heyday in the 1960’s and 70’s with several underground publications.  The Realist for example, spoke out on political issues of the day. However, ran into financial difficulty and ceased publication in the 1970’s.

The Village Voice considered an alternative weekly magazine is arts oriented and speaks out on certain issues as well.  This magazine is still publishing.

Two Underground publications we have from Canada are; The Underground Press, from Snow Lake, Manitoba and The Georgia Straight from Vancouver, British Columbia.

Banned.magazine.com provides global censorship information.

Some publications that offer a different voice have been forced to go underground.  Often times these publications are anti government or anti establishment and are illegal.  Yet there is still a segment of the population that is willing and ready to read them.

Censorship is always a fundamental issue at the heart of democratic freethinking societies.  We expect to see censorship in dictatorships and harsh political regimes, but in the West we are most often under the illusion that free speech is exactly that.  Where does our fundamental rights to free speech end and where do the government and other ruling authorities have the right to intervene and take them away?

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