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Published on Oct 28, 2015
Lecture Forty-four Discussion American Freethought- Sex Radicals, Birth Control advocates and their enemy- Anthony Comstock. The books and articles referred to in the lecture may be found in the Bibliography at the end of the written lecture, Lecture Forty-four American Free Thought The books and articles referred to in the talk may be found in the Bibliography at the end of the written lecture “American Freethought- Sex Radicals, Birth Control advocates and their enemy- Anthony Comstock” at AtheistScholar.org. There are two earlier lectures, “Robert Ingersoll and the Golden Age of Freethought,” and “Anarchism, Atheism and Emma Goldman,” at AtheistScholar.org and on YouTube which discuss issues during the same time span as the current talk; and it is suggested that they be read together in order to form a more complete picture of United States Freethought during the Gilded Age until the beginning of the First World War. The topic of this lecture will be the continuation of a discussion begun in earlier lectures about the freethinkers in this country from just before the Civil War (1861-1865) to just before the First World War (1914-1918) and a little beyond. Many American freethinkers were advocates of free love and of birth control. They wanted both information about birth control and devices to be made freely available to all Americans. We shall be glancing at some of their influences, ideas and attempts to carry out their theories in the real world, to test their ideas’ relevance and workability. We shall be encountering an interesting, vibrant and feisty group of thinkers and activists.