MASSACHUSETTS: Ban on Fruit

Four cops, warned in advance, followed chubby Critic Bernard DeVoto into a Cambridge, Massachusetts bookstore. So did a Civil Liberties Union lawyer. Then followed a neatly planned little routine. Critic DeVoto asked for a copy of Lillian Smith's Southern novel, Strange Fruit, which had been suppressed by Boston booksellers and banned by Cambridge's police chief for mixing a stubby Anglo-Saxon word into a serious study of miscegenation (TIME, April 10). For his $2.75, Benny DeVoto got a copy of the book and some strange fruit of his own seeking: a court summons for trafficking in "obscene" literature. Thus last week...

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