Obscenity Trial

On this day in 1928 police seized 800 copies of Radclyffe Hall’s lesbian novel The Well of Loneliness. It would be put on trial as obscenity later in 1928 under the Obscene Publications Act of 1857; Virginia Woolf came to the trial but wasn’t allowed to provide testimony — nobody was.

Interestingly, 1928 was the same year women got the right to vote in the UK.


(h/t to The Progressive’s “Hidden History” calendar, via FW)

2 Replies to “Obscenity Trial”

  1. For those interested in literature and the history of book-banning, ‘obscenity’ litigation and efforts to stop the censorship of certain works in America, a wonderful account, by the lawyer Edward de Grazia – involved with the trials to get Henry Miller published in the U.S. –
    is ‘Girls Lean Back Everywhere – The Law of Obscenity And The Assault On Genius’ (1992). Great tales of the battles fought for freedom in the arts in the mid-20th century.

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