#*$! Censorship: A Cross Cultural Comparison of Censorship in Film in the United States and Spain

Madeline G. Petersen, The College of Wooster


This independent study explores the laws of censorship in Spain and America and the effect they have on each country’s daily culture. The history behind each country’s censorship laws began in the 1940’s, with the boom of radio, television, and film. During the rise in popularity of the media, Americans were dealing with McCarthyism and Spain was deep into Franco’s reign, but each country eventually found freedom from their initial incredibly strict censorship laws. While studying abroad in Spain, my passion for film led me to ask the question of how the censorship of films could be so different, yet so similar, in each culture. My study analyzes American and Spanish students’ reactions to different popular Spanish and American film clips. I find that reactions to each clip vary depending on the content, but that American student’s reactions are different from Spanish reactions. Movies are drastically important in a society because as we shape films, films, in turn, shape us.


© Copyright 2014 Madeline G. Petersen