Verbal Sex: Hollywood Censorship and the Birth of the Screwball Comedy

Londino, Cathleen
May 2012
International Journal of the Image;2012, Vol. 2 Issue 1, p25
Academic Journal
The various attempts at imposing censorship on the American film industry, ultimately became effective, when screen image successfully combined with sound. Hollywood left behind explicit images and revealing clothing, and found new ways to illustrate sexual tension. Verbal repartee, best portrayed in "screwball" comedies, replaced "forbidden" sexual content with witty dialogue. The screen depicted strong women, successful in the workplace, who sought to replace sexual conquest with sexual equality. The 1930's gave rise to a roster of strong female actors, starring in a plethora of strong female roles. This paper examines the effects of Hollywood censorship through the image of screwball comedy.


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