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All Good Books Are Catholic BooksPrint Culture, Censorship, and Modernity in Twentieth-Century America$
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Una M. Cadegan

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780801451126

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801451126.001.0001

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Censorship in the Land of “Thinking on One’s Own”

Censorship in the Land of “Thinking on One’s Own”

(p.104) Chapter 5 Censorship in the Land of “Thinking on One’s Own”
All Good Books Are Catholic Books

Una M. Cadegan

Cornell University Press

This chapter explores how the Roman Catholic Church's censorship system was “translated”—explained and rationalized—to the Catholic reading public and also to and by Catholic scholars, writers, and intellectuals in the twentieth century. These translations and rationales not only deal with the complexities of print culture, but also extend into popular media more generally and beyond that into discussions about the place of Catholicism in twentieth-century American life. The chapter considers how the Index of Forbidden Books was translated and transmitted in part in the classroom and how the translation created a distinct subgenre in U.S. Catholic print culture. It also explains how censorship functioned in the lives of readers and writers and concludes with a discussion of censorship's incompatibility with foundational American tenets, such as those embodied in the First Amendment.

Keywords:   censorship, Roman Catholic Church, scholars, writers, intellectuals, print culture, popular media, Catholicism, Index of Forbidden Books, readers

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