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Social and Behavioral Sciences Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

2012

Gender

Macalester College

Law and Politics

Articles 1 - 1 of 1

Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Deciphering A Duality: Understanding Conflicting Standards In Sex & Violence Censorship In U.S. Obscenity Law, Rushabh P. Bhakta May 2012

Deciphering A Duality: Understanding Conflicting Standards In Sex & Violence Censorship In U.S. Obscenity Law, Rushabh P. Bhakta

Political Science Honors Projects

This research examines the division in US obscenity law that enables strict sex censorship while overlooking violence. By investigating the social and legal development of obscenity in US culture, I argue that the contemporary duality in obscenity censorship standards arose from a family of forces consisting of faith, economy, and identity in early American history. While sexuality ingrained itself in American culture as a commodity in need of regulation, violence was decentralized from the state and proliferated. This phenomenon led to a prioritization of suppressing sexual speech over violent speech. This paper traces the emergence this duality and its source.