Literary Inquisition - China Banned Books Exhibit : Literary Inquisition - Banned Books Exhibit (2012)

This exhibition was part of the International Area Studies Banned Book Exhibits in fall 2012.

China Official Rugulations of Banned Materials

Regulation on the Administration of Publication (2016 Revised)

Article 25 The following contents are prohibited from being included in any publication:   
第二十五条 任何出版物不得含有下列内容:

1.Which object the basic principles determined in the Constitution; 
2.Which endanger the unity of the nation, sovereignty or territorial integrity; 
3.Which divulge secrets of the State, endanger national security or damage the honor or benefits of the State; 
4.Which incite the national hatred or discrimination, undermine the solidarity of the nations, or infringe upon national customs and habits. 
5.Which propagate evil cults or superstition; 
6.Which disturb the public order or destroy the public stability;
7.Which propagate obscenity, gambling, violence or instigate crimes; 
8.Which insult or slander others, or infringe upon the lawful rights and interests of others;
9.Which endanger public ethics or the fine folk cultural traditions; 
10. Other contents prohibited by laws, administrative regulations or provisions of the State.

Ethnic Issues -- Political prohibited

National Image and Moral Standard

Literary Inquisition

literary inquisition_lg

This page was created in conjunction with the "Banned Book Exhibit 2012," an IAS exhibit series held in Fall 2012.  Featured are types and examples of material under censorship in ancient and modern China. Included are a few Ming and Qing era novels which were censored at their first publication, and are now considered classics. Differing political thought, religious expression, ethnic group movements, and immoral contents have all been censored under Communist China.  Censorship has been practiced throughout all the dynasties from the first emperor Qin into today's modern China.  Literary inquisition or 文字狱 wen zi yu (imprisonment for literary works) has been a common practice throughout Chinese history.

Political prohibited

Ming and Qing Pornographies

《剪灯新话》《醋葫芦》《品花宝鉴》《隔帘花影》《国色天香》《飞花艳想》《空空幻》《玉楼春》《红楼春梦》 《九尾龟》

Illegal religious and superstition

Ask a Librarian

Ask a Librarian

We can help with your research questions -- contact us by chat, phone, email, text or at a Research Help desk.