CFP: Banned in Boston (1/12/07; ALA, 5/24/07-5/27/07)

full name / name of organization: 
Sweet, Nancy
contact email: 

Title: Banned in Boston
Proposed Panel for the American Literature Association Conference
Abstract deadline: January 12, 2007
Conference: May 24-27 in Boston, MA

The phrase "Banned in Boston" came into widespread usage in the 1920s during a particularly active campaign to censure objectionable, offensive, and obscene works in the city sometimes called "The Cradle of Liberty." This proposed panel for the 2007 Meeting of the ALA will examine the politics of moral enforcement as played out in Boston over the centuries. What social, political, religious, and economic agendas are served through the practice of censorship? How does the goal of protecting the public measure against the values of artistic liberty and freedom of speech?

Possible themes for papers:

The banning of particular literary, dramatic, or cinematic works
Changing definitions of obscenity and offensiveness
The censuring and censoring of literary forms (drama, the novel, etc)
The exiling of individuals from Boston and its vicinities
The suppression of social activities, such as the celebration of Christmas
Reform groups, such as the Watch and Ward Society
Religion and the politics of moral reform
Publishers, booksellers, and censorship
Gender, race, and censorship

Please submit one page abstracts with a brief CV to Nancy F. Sweet at California State University, Sacramento ( In your subject header, please type "ALA Proposal."

Nancy F. Sweet
Assistant Professor of English
California State University, Sacramento
6000 J Street
Sacramento, CA 95655

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Received on Tue Nov 28 2006 - 17:55:36 EST