Pornography on Trial: A Handbook With Cases, Laws, and Documents
Anti-smut crusaders and advocates of free speech have always been locked in an intellectual death struggle. In fact, at one time even the disseminators of birth control information were prosecuted for "obscenity." How this ongoing battle has fared during the last two centuries in the United States is now surveyed in Pornography on Trial. This book assesses the U.S. legal and doctrinal rules that interest groups, communities, and judges employ to regulate, suppress, or tolerate allegedly obscene material. The coverage provides a blueprint for surveying American pornography policies in the latter half of the 20th century, covering the full sweep of anti-obscenity measures, from the key 1868 "Hicklin test" to the latest decisions involving the Communications Decency Act of 1996. The volume contains a solid introduction, examines the social, economic, political and historical background of the issue, and discusses the impact of key cases on U.S. society. There are also primary documents, such as court decisions and interviews; an A-Z list of individuals, laws, and concepts; a chronology; a glossary; and an annotated bibliography.