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A History of Censorship: The Role of James Bond

A History of Censorship: The Role of James Bond

last week, I was telling you about the censorship of Roald Dahl’s booksamong which we find Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I saw it as a turning point in the publishing world.

“Sensitive readers” appointed to purge today’s and tomorrow’s manuscripts of any comments potentially offensive to “minorities” now turn to works of the past, rewrite them, and also cross them out.

I have announced that other business will pass there. We are already there.


the cable He tells us it’s Ian Fleming’s turn to go. More specifically the novels of the series James Bondwhich should now be removed from their racist remarks against black people – but not about Asians, who knows why.

Likewise, comments that offend homosexuals will be kept.

We must understand: from what criteria should we rewrite the work?

Which identity groups are protected and which groups are not? And why does this rule change from author to author? And should we be content to erase the passages that trouble us, or should we rewrite them to adapt them entirely to the present tense?

Are we going to have to rewrite Mordecai Richler’s books tomorrow as he vomited on Quebecers? Let it be known in advance that I would oppose it.


Very concretely, why, in Roald Dahl’s rewriting, was there a particular interest in combating the negative representation of obesity and modifying the vision he had of women?

Why does Ian Fleming focus more on skin colour?

Should not simple common sense lead us to think that we must accept the work as it is, with what it was of yesterday, that we have no right to modify it on a whim, and that a reader of our time will be able to do so? Feeling things by reading them?