Comics Code Warriors

As someone who owns the first Silver Age issue that did not have a stamp from the Comics Code Authority, I am more than a little envious that I did think of this topic first. David Hajdu’s The Ten-Cent Plague chronicles Fredric Wertham’s crusade against comic books during the 1950s.

For those who haven’t read it, Wertham’s alarmist screed, The Seduction of the Innocent, is good for more than a few laughs.

Wertham fearfully speculates at length, for example, about a possible gay relationship between Bruce Wayne and his young “ward” Dick Grayson. Much less amusing were the resultant calls for censorship. These ultimately led to the “voluntary” establishment of the Comics Code Authority by the industry.

Hat tip Norman Singleton.

David Beito is a Research Fellow at The Independent Institute and editor of the Independent book, The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society (with Peter Gordon and Alexander Tabarrok).
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