Banned in the Media: A Reference Guide to Censorship in the Press, Motion Pictures, Broadcasting, and the Internet

Banned in the Media: A Reference Guide to Censorship in the Press, Motion Pictures, Broadcasting, and the Internet

Banned in the Media: A Reference Guide to Censorship in the Press, Motion Pictures, Broadcasting, and the Internet

Banned in the Media: A Reference Guide to Censorship in the Press, Motion Pictures, Broadcasting, and the Internet

Synopsis

From colonial times to the present, the media in America has been subject to censorship challenges and regulations. This comprehensive reference guide to media censorship provides in-depth coverage of each media format--newspapers, magazines, motion pictures, radio, television, and the Internet--all of which have been, and continue to be, battlegrounds for First Amendment issues. Each media format is examined in-depth, from its origins and history through its modern development, and features discussion of landmark incidents and cases. Foerstel, author of Banned in the U.S.A., the acclaimed reference guide to book censorship in schools and public libraries, offers a brief history of media censorship, examines in-depth the drama of seven landmark incidents, and includes 31 relevant court cases. Complementing the volume are personal interviews with prominent victims of media censorship, who give human voice to the struggle of the media to remain free, and an examination of censorship of the student press.

Excerpt

The most important episode of media censorship in early American history was the case of John Peter Zenger, publisher of New York City's Weekly Journal, who was prosecuted in 1735 for printing criticism of a British colonial governor. In those days, New York City had a population of about 10,000, of whom 1,700 were black slaves. There were less than 2,000 houses in the city, and residents could shoot quail just east of Broadway. Virtually the only business being transacted was the importing of supplies for the colonies.

New York, like the other colonies, had a popular assembly, but the governor had the power to convene and dissolve the assembly at his pleasure and had an absolute veto over its acts. Governor William Cosby, who served from 1732 to 1736, exercised his authority in an arbitrary and despotic fashion, generating political unrest bordering on revolution. During the first few years of Cosby's administration, New York's only newspaper, the New York Weekly Gazette, served as a mouthpiece for his party, the Court party. Founded by William Bradford in 1725, the Gazette was the first newspaper published in all the colonies and carried considerable political influence.

Unable to find critical discussion of the Cosby administration in the Gazette, New York's citizenry gathered at their favorite meeting places, the Black Horse Tavern and the marketplace, to exchange information and express their dissatisfaction. The popular antagonism toward . . .

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