Can Mere Language (Without Pictures) Be Obscene?

An American court will decide. It is apparently an unsettled legal question. In any case, bluenose Pennsylvania prosecutor Mary Beth Buchanan, employing the awesome power of the federal government, has indicted dangerous porno queen Karen Fletcher, "a 56-year-old recluse living on disability payments . . .  for writings distributed on the Internet to about two dozen subscribers." There is certainly an obscenity here, but it is not the writings of Karen Fletcher.

Author: jd

Joseph Duemer is Professor of Literature Emeritus at Clarkson University in northern New York state. His most recent book of poems is Magical Thinking from Ohio State University Press. Since the mid-1990s he has spent a good deal of time in Vietnam, mostly Hanoi. He lives with his wife Carole & five terriers (four Jack Russells & one Patterdale) on the stony bank of the Raquette River in South Colton.