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Letter from Eugenia Y. Genovar regarding comic book censorship, November 24, 1953

News of the Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency grabbed public attention. Eugenia Genovar, a Florida mother, expressed her views in a letter to Senator Robert Hendrickson of New Jersey. She urged him not to waste taxpayer dollars on a long investigation, since the corrupting influence of comic books on young minds was so readily evident.

Records of the U.S. Senate, National Archives and Records Administration

Letter from Eugenia Y. Genovar regarding comic book censorship, November 24, 1953

Comic Books and Juvenile Delinquency

Alarmed by a dramatic rise in juvenile delinquency in the 1950s, Congress explored the possible influence of crime, horror, and superhero comic books on youths’ behavior. To investigate this potential correlation, Senator Robert Hendrickson of New Jersey moved to create a subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Senator Estes Kefauver of Tennessee, who succeeded Hendrickson as chairman of the committee, oversaw a series of televised hearings in New York in the spring of 1954. Following the hearings, comic book publishers voluntarily developed new standards of content control.

This country cannot afford the calculated risk involved in feeding its children, through comic books, a concentrated diet of crime, horror, and violence.

Interim Report of the Committee on the Judiciary, 1955–1956