Censorship Essay

Censorship is the control of public communications. Because censorship occurs — in some form — within government, schools, media and popular culture, it is a very approachable, socially-relevant essay topic.

Censorship — Persuasive Topics

  • Internet Censorship. Should the Internet be censored? Who should decide what Internet content is deemed “inappropriate?” Should companies and schools use “Net Nanny” software to monitor and restrict Internet access?
  • Literary Censorship. What type of books should be allowed in school libraries? Should publishers censor books? Should people be allowed to buy books that include sensitive or potentially-inappropriate information, such as sex, crime or violence?
  • Media Censorship. Should the media be allowed to leak government secrets? To what extent should the media be able to alter interviews and source information before publication?

Censorship — Expository Topics

  • How has government censorship changed in the last century?
  • What role does the government play in censoring content in [country]?
  • What effect have government censures had on the availability and popularity of banned books?

Censorship — Literary Essay Topics

Examine censorship as it relates to a work of popular fiction:

  • Meta-censorship in Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
  • Characters’ self-censorship in A Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • Argot as a censorship-avoidance method in A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
  • Books that have been banned throughout history because they were deemed “obscene”: Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe, Candide by Voltaire and Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence.