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Early Censorship in Paris : A New Look at the Roles of the Parlement of Paris and of King Francis I 

James K. Farge

James K. Farge, « Early Censorship in Paris : A New Look at the Roles of the Parlement of Paris and of King Francis I », Renaissance and Reformation / Renaissance et Réforme, Vol. 25 No. 2 (1989) : New Series Vol. 13, No 2.

Extrait de l’article

Fears about the spread of ideas deemed dangerous or false remain deep within the consciousness of even our post-Enlightenment world. Not surprisingly then, social groups in earlier centuries habitually tried to uppress such ideas to promote order in this world and to secure salvation in the next. Then, as now, most people differed not so much on whether to ensor as on what to censor.

Few objected when the advent of printing from movable type prompted spate of new legislation to stop the rapid spread of errors made possible by the printed book. First popes, then princes and magistrates, drafted laws calling either for the submission of manuscripts prior to printing or for the destruction of offensive books already produced. Secular authorities sought first to control political tracts, but they readily supported the clergy in suppressing books declared heterodox. By the end of the sixteenth century, catalogues of prohibited books had appeared in over a dozen major centres troughout Europe, and the Index librorum prohibitorum established in the era of Trent in 1559 continued to censor books until its abolition during the Second Vatican Council in 1966. The controversy over censorship continues recurrently at all levels of government and social groups.
Franz Reusch’s pioneering study in the nineteenth century of the early censorship of printed books was far too vast a project for the restricted scale he employed. Only recently has the subject engaged the efforts of an editor who has mustered the scholarly and financial resources equal to the ask.

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