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Censorship Opposing Viewpoints Censorship is one of the gauges of civilization it is a measure of the rationality and liberalism of an individual in an evolving society Its origins are unclear however it is certain that it has been around for thousands of years Fustel de Coulanges said in his writings the citizens of the ancient city-state knew neither liberty in private life liberty in education nor religious liberty The human person counted for little against that holy and almost divine authority which was called the country or state Intro xii The powers in charge during these pre-Renaissance times controlled what the everyday person saw or heard often because the opinions of a few could challenge this divine authority that was never questioned Often the churchs attempt to keep the gospel out of the hands of their congregations was based on a belief that untutored minds might be led into heresy by reading the Gospel through misunderstanding Intro xiv Today the nature of the community determines the goals for the selection of library and classroom materials In public libraries the curriculum can be equated to any topic with sufficient community interest to warrant inclusion in the collection Intro 1 Occasionally some of these materials are challenged by a person or group concerned with its appropriateness The results has two opposing points of view one believes that more suitable materials can be foundthe other maintains that intellectual freedom can be upheld only if students are given an opportunity to examine any available relevant materials in order to gain the insights needed to reach their own conclusions Intro 1 Reasons for cited censorship have included drugs governmental or administrative criticism language morals politics racism religion sex and war The materials involved have been described as being biased communistic controversial filthy immoral inaccurate lascivious lewd obscene poorly written pornographic pro-Chicano or pro-Negro questionable racy radical risqu sacrilegious smut un-American and violent Intro 10 Recently the
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