Religion: Catholic Censorship

When Redmond Burke was a student at the University of Illinois, he had some spiritual troubles over his required reading. As a Roman Catholic, he knew that he was forbidden, under pain of sin, to read books listed in the Vatican's Index Librorum Prohibitorum—the index of forbidden books. But like most Catholics (and non-Catholics) he had only a dim notion of how the church's book censorship operated and what, exactly, it forbade.

Burke, at 37, is now a priest and the librarian of Chicago's De Paul University. As a professional librarian, he has had a fine chance to look into his old...

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