Pornography and Feminism

Bernard Williams

John Sutherland has produced ‘a calendar following a series of events (mostly trials) from 1960 to the present day’, which deals briefly and brightly with obscenity cases from Lady Chatterley’s Lover and Fanny Hill to The Romans in Britain.[*] The aim is to investigate changes in public attitudes to ‘offensive literature’. It is a lively survey, but is not the useful history of that process which might be written.

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[*] Offensive Literature: Decensorship in Britain 1960-1982. Junction Books, 216 pp., £5.95, 18 November 1982 0 86245 065 9.

[†] This, among other simplifications, is excellently discussed by Susan Barrowclough-Ignatieff in her review of the Canadian film Not a Love Story: Screen. Vol. 23, No 5 (Nov-Dec 1982).