With book as horrific as this one (having read it.. I can attest); you would think there would no end of references to its being banned. And yet. Nothing. Nada. It's as if banning the book gave it too much legitimacy; everyone hoped to ignore it and it would go away. Considering the book is so well known that the author's name became a commonly used word (Sadism, Sadist) for cruelty - its not going to go anywhere any time soon.
South Korean authorities have moved to ban a translation of the Marquis de Sade's "120 Days of Sodom" for what is being deemed pornographic content. The ban comes as Americans commemorate Banned Books Week.
According to the AFP news service, the Korean Publication Ethics Commission charged that the book was "extremely obscene and cruel, involving acts of sadism, incest, bestiality and necrophilia." All extant copies of the book in South Korea are apparently to be destroyed.
For better or worse, the above is a not inaccurate description of the 1785 French novel that is, in essence, porn for the page. Attempts by Page Views to quote from the text proved unsuccessful, so rife is the writing with varieties of sexual experience, most of them tending to the cruel.
South Korea has lifted its ban on the Korean language translation of the kinky 18th-century novel “The 120 Days of Sodom” by the Marquis de Sade, reversing an earlier decision to censor it for “extreme obscenity.”
The Korea Publication Ethics Commission, a state review board, has accepted an appeal by the Dongsuh Press publishing house that the book had significant literary value, senior board official Jang Tag-Hwan told AFP.
"The commission auditors, after reviewing related documents submitted by the publisher, concluded that the book was written to delve into the dark side of human nature rather than simply trigger sexual or violent excitement," Jang explained.
Dongsuh Press blasted the ban as "cultural dictatorship” last month when the board told the publisher to recall and destroy all copies of the book, hailing it as "extremely obscene and cruel", while featuring acts of sadism, incest, necrophilia and sexual acts involving minors.
The translated version of the book, which spotlights the sexual orgies of four wealthy French libertines who spend their time raping and torturing teenage victims before finally murdering them, hit the shelves of South Korean stores in August.
While the ban has been lifted, the book is still reportedly described as a "harmful publication for minors" and must be sold in a sealed plastic cover only to buyers aged 19 or above, Jang said.