Critical reading is the careful reading of a given text with the main aim of analyzing and evaluating the information contained therein and if possible, extractingvaluable information for research or other purposes.
Censorship refers to the selective filtering and permission of artisticor socio-cultural material,to protect the minors and public from unwarranted andoffensive information by regulating what information to be in the public domain.
Step 1: Preview
a. Title of the article: ‘The Ed Sullivan Show and the (Censored) Sounds of the Sixties’
b. Name of the journal: ‘The Journal of Popular Culture’
c. Year of publication: 2006
d. Author of the article: Ian Inglis
e. What comes to mind when I look at the title: Strict regulations and excessive monitoring of the content from entertainment industry in the sixties.
Step 2: Skim – article sections
1. Section 1: Introduction
2. Section 2:Bob Dylan “Talkin’ John Birch Society Blues”
3. Section 3:The Rolling Stones “Let’s Spend The Night Together”
4. Section 4: The Doors “Light My Fire”
5. Section 5:Contexts and Consequences
6. Section 6:Conclusion
Step 3: Read – Summary
Section 1: Introduction
The author is strongly against the state and other forces censoring the entertainment industry. He cites The Ed Sullivan Show as having been one of the greatest shows to suffer under the US suppressive policies in the 1960s. The author concludes by stating that the US democratic policies are always conflicting with freedom of artistic expression citing the barring of music composers and performers from performing as an example.
Section 2: Bob Dylan “Talkin’ John Birch Society Blues”
Although Dylan made himself a name by his song ‘Talking’, he never realized his ambition of airing it in The Ed Sullivan Show. Though plans were underway for the particular single, Dylan never received an invitation. Thereafter, the organizers urged him to change his remove the song from the playlist, stating that it had some defamatory elements. Dylan blatantly objected to this kind of censorship, a decision that cost him all the concerts.
Section 3: The Rolling Stones “Let’s Spend the Night Together”
Despite the fact that several radio and TV stations banned a popular single bythe Rolling Stones, it finally gained unprecedented popularity in 1967. The Rolling Stones decides to work beyond the barrier of Censorship to launch their single “Let’s Spend the Night Together” on The Ed Sullivan Show. This relentless attitude enhanced their status as artistic icons.
Section 4: The Doors “Light My Fire”
Owing to the fact that in 1967, few groups had singles like the Doors, the Doors were undoubtedly more famous than any other group at the time. Their first hiccup started when their maiden performance at Monterey backfired followed by a series of concert cancellation by either the police or the promoters. The concerned parties cited gross misconduct and ‘indecent’ content as responsible for massive censorship of their music.
Section 5: Contexts and Consequences
Although the three examples were not the only reported cases on censorship on the US entertainment industry, the TV broadcast they received made them more pronounced. Particularly justifies is the Rock and Roll Style that most conservatives considered offensive and against the acceptable norms. However, such allegations do not meet the threshold of warranting censorship in the entertainment industry.
Section 6: Conclusion
The author concludes by emphasizing on the positive impact that censorship brought to the victims. While Dylan’s adamancy accentuated his prowess as a songwriter as many people believed in his integrity, Rolling Stones’ compliance gave them the necessary fame that they had so needed. The author highlights the need for continued fighting spirit against the suppressive policies of modern institutions just as the relentless efforts by Door.

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