Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Censorship and Intellectual Freedom
The encyclopedia article on censorship is especially interesting, becuase it focuses on who exactly attempts to censor reading materials and ideas. Librarians, popes, political leaders, and feminists are just a few of the groups that have attempted censorship of particular materials. All are offended by certain elements and have different means for promoting the censorship of specific materials. The intellectual freedom article addresses the more political aspects of censorship practiced by governments. China, the Soviet Union, and South Africa (and certainly the United States, too) have all practiced censorship and have used to different means to discourage certain ideas and teachings. Governments can simply ban certain materials, or libraries can restrict access to certain areas, or , as in the cases of the United States and South Africa, can practice partial censorship through racial profiling in an attempt to prevent subervise, independent behavior. I think the word censorship certainly has negative connotation, but putting that aside do you think there is value in censorship? Does it prevent the fermentation of certain dangerous ideas? Or does it simply make people more curious about certain materials?