‘Reading Society Aright’: Five Years after the Video Recordings Act

Julian Petley

in Film and Video Censorship in Contemporary Britain

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780748625383
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748670871 | DOI:
‘Reading Society Aright’: Five Years after the Video Recordings Act

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This chapter presents an update regarding film and video censorship five years after the establishment of the Video Recordings Act. It specifically describes the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) Annual Report for 1988. This report stressed its ‘alleged potential for encouraging anti-social violence on the streets of Britain’. The BBFC cut violent material from fifty-four videos and seven films, a total of sixty-three minutes' screen time, in 1988. It was particularly preoccupied with the question of sexual violence, and general violence against women. It was also taken up with what it quaintly called ‘manners’. This turns out to be the problem of bad language. The chapter then investigates some of the issues raised in the Report I through a discussion with the BBFC Director, James Ferman.

Keywords: British Board of Film Classification; BBFC Annual Report; 1988; Britain; film; video censorship; violent material; sexual violence; women; bad language

Chapter.  4045 words. 

Subjects: Film

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