Chapter

Essaying the Censors

Jonathan E. Abel

in Redacted

Published by University of California Press

Published in print September 2012 | ISBN: 9780520273344
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780520953406 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520273344.003.0004
Essaying the Censors

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The third chapter exposes the gradual transformation of caustic humor about censorship into bitter accusations about its bureaucratic irrationality. It examines this transformation in essays, fiction, poetry, and plays published during the period between the Great Kantō Earthquake (1923) and the end of the occupation (1952). The boom in overt and covert discussions of and comments on censorship was accessible to the general reading public. Luminaries published responses to censorship that ranged from accounts of personal experiences and examinations of the specific practice of the Japanese system to philosophical inquiries into the abstract essence of censorship. In comparison with earlier moments in Japan and with discussions of censorship in the United States during the same period, humor is relatively absent from discussions of censorship at its measurable apex in the interwar period.

Keywords: humor; censorship; satire; personification of writing; essays

Chapter.  9862 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Anthropology

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