Comic Book Censorship 1954

In 1954, a Senate subcommittee on juvenile delinquency met to discuss “the problem of horror and crime comic books.” Over three days of hearings, numerous experts were called to testify whether the comics of the day were contributing to an increase in violent crimes among teens. A doctor testified, “most of the children that we do see at the psychiatric services of the court are reading comic books.” The New York State joint legislative committee claimed, “The reading of crime comics stimulates sadistic and masochistic attitudes.” After negative press on the hearings, the comic publishers went into public relations damage-control mode. The companies whose reputations survived the hearings adopted the Comics Code Authority, which eliminated much of the controversial content.