Eli M. Oboler Memorial Award winner announced

Contact: Don Wood



For Immediate Release

January 29, 2002

Eli M. Oboler Memorial Award winner announced

Marjorie Heins, author of "Not in Front of the Children: Indecency, Censorship, and the Innocence of Youth," is the 2002 winner of the Eli M. Oboler Memorial Award.

Presented by the American Library Association (ALA) Intellectual Freedom Round Table (IFRT), the Eli M. Oboler Memorial Award, named for the extensively published Idaho University librarian known as a 'champion of intellectual freedom who demanded the dismantling of all barriers to freedom of expression,' is presented for the best published work in the area of intellectual freedom. The award consists of a citation and $500.

"The committee is very pleased to present Marjorie Heins with this award for 'Not in Front of the Children' (Hill & Wang Pub., 2001), an excellent analysis of current trends to censor books and other media in the name of 'protecting minors' that we are facing in the United States today," said Oboler Award Committee Chair Joan Beam.

"Heins' book is extensively researched and a pleasure to read. Her writing style is most approachable, her examples are clearly relevant, and her argument is well presented," said Beam. "The rights of minors for free expression are constantly being thwarted by those seeking to protect them from what they perceive as harmful materials. In addition, Heins shows how access to information is thus limited to all, adults and minors alike."

Heins, a First Amendment lawyer and director of The Free Expression Policy Project, a project of the National Coalition Against Censorship, said, "I wanted to write a book that would put the whole legal history and cultural politics of youth-censorship in perspective, from attacks on detective comics in the 1950s to Internet filters and v-chips today. I can't imagine a greater honor for my book than to be recognized by America's librarians as having made a contribution to intellectual freedom."

The award will be presented on Saturday, June 15, at 1:30 p.m., during the IFRT program at the ALA Annual Conference in Atlanta.

For more information, see the
award Web site.