Mike Mashon

All aticles by Mike Mashon

Deep focus

Pre-Code: Hollywood before the censors

In the brief window between the announcement of the Hays Code censorship guidelines in 1930 and the creation of a body with sufficient resources to implement them in 1934, Hollywood studios were able to portray America with a realism previously unseen in its history. Below, Mike Mashon explores the history of demands for a system of moral oversight and shows how conservatives lobbied to enforce it; then James Bell examines the new-found freedoms filmmakers enjoyed in their depiction of taboo subjects from adultery and poverty to crime.

By Mike Mashon and James Bell

Pre-Code: Hollywood before the censors
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