Not so long ago, JD Salinger's coming-of-age story Catcher in the Rye was a banned book, along with classics like Ulysses and Lady Chatterley's Lover.
State Library Victoria holds a cache of supposedly subversive and dangerous books which were marked with special stars on the spine, and kept hidden away 'from prying hands and curious minds' as former Principal Librarian, History of the Book and Arts, Des Cowley explains.
In this film, Des lifts the curtain on these restricted texts, many of which contain the word 'sex' in the title and some of which have been displayed in our exhibitions, such as the World of the Book exhibition.
More to explore
- View some of the restricted books in our catalogue, including Daphnis and Chloe, a first edition of James Joyce's Ulysses and JD Salinger's Catcher in the Rye.
- View our Books and ideas online gallery, including restricted books
- Watch Patrick Spedding's entertaining Foxcroft Lecture on the history of restricted books from the Vatican to the New York Public Library
- Explore a wealth of ideas and imagination in World of the Book.