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Customer reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
16
Ban This Filth!: Letters From the Mary Whitehouse Archive
Format: Hardcover|Change
Price:£16.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


on 10 January 2014
Like a lot of people who grew up in the 1970s, I have always felt that Mary Whitehouse was a prudish, fun-hating bigot on the wrong side of just about every issue she got involved with. I can't say this book changed my mind about her, but I was left with respect for the fact she stood up for what she believed in, and never gave up her point. She comes out of the book as a more complex character than one might have thought, but hardly more likeable (although some of her antagonists were supercilious and patronising to the extent that there were a couple of instances in the book where I felt myself cheering Mary on). The irony is that while Mrs Whitehouse was getting aerated about what was being broadcast, we now know that far worse was going on behind the scenes of British light entertainment, and probably had been for some time.

Anyway, this is a highly entertaining read which tells you a lot about the state of British culture in the 70s and 80s, about the British right of the same period - and about just how ghastly some of the bien pensant cultural panjundrums of the era could be.
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on 20 December 2016
Comprehensive, and insightful as much as it is funny, this book serves as a thoroughly enjoyable read. I bought this book for a dissertation on Mary Whitehouse and regardless of the fact that it provided me with reams of useful information, I found myself reading on for pleasure. Written in a decidedly liberal tone, it's surprisingly well rounded but my favourite feature has to be the quippy little one liners.
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on 17 July 2015
Super
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on 27 November 2013
Mary Whitehouse loomed large over my childhood by forever, it seemed, trying to ban my favourite show - Doctor Who. As I sat there blissfully unaware of the detrimental effect of viewing "obscene vegetable matter" or a particular freeze frame of Tom Baker drowning, Mary Whitehouse was on the case. She bombarded anyone who would listen (and many who would not) with letters of complaint. This book collects some of the most amusing and although she often condemns herself in print (particularly in her early days of activism when she could be viewed as both racist and homophobic) this book is not a hatchet job. Some of her criticisms carry a greater weight today - in particular there is a piece early on about Gary Glitter lyrics which, in retrospect....well, you get the picture. I would highly recommend this book as an amusing, eye-opening read about cultural history and a window into a world of everyday activism which, at once, seems almost impossibly distant in time but very relevant to today.
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on 31 December 2012
Fantastic purchase, and a facinating insight into British social and moral history. Bought a second copy as a birthday gift for a friend.
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on 6 June 2014
If you know about Mary Whitehouse in todays society it`s hard not to see where she was coming from. Back in the 60`s/70s though she came across as a bit of a crackpot. Something`s have come alarmingly true and others not so much. Despite this, the book is a fascinating look into one of Televisions fiercest critics and is a great read.
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on 2 December 2013
Mary Whitehouse's gifts for publicity and propaganda were far-reaching indeed.The fact that she pushed a very right-wing,evangelical Christian view of the world (think the US Moral Majority)which was shared by hardly anyone in Britain makes her even more interssting.
Problem is her obsessions with sex and violence were vey much misplaced.The great British public weren't too much worried about sex but were very wary of violence. Whitehouse iverted these issues.If she concentrated on violence and let her obsessions with sex take a back seat,she may have got much more influence
Some hilarious stuff in here.I liked the ongoing war of words between her and Johnny Speight(of "Till Death..." fame)and her ability to sit therough stuff she claimed was mortally offensive. I think she protested a bit too much, but read this and make your own mind up.
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on 8 January 2013
I bought this for a friend, I must say as I thought it would be quite funny given the focus on the correspondence. However I am told that whilst it wasn't as light in that respect it was very interesting. In particular I am told that she quite often saw controversial things that weren't there and her letters were full of freudian slips! Another aspect that is perhaps overlooked is how some of her warnings were arguably a portent of problems to come with light touch regulation of some channels.
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on 27 December 2012
Highly entertaining read for those who lived through Mrs Whitehouse's era of letterwriting...possibly an insight into a lost world for the email-only generation. A tad wordy in its style (the writer loves his complex sentences...) but a thorough and sometimes biting overview of an uptight, Daily Mail-reading woman who was already thirty years too late by the time she wrote her first letter.
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on 14 December 2012
This was a present for my husband, he loves it. The company I bought it from were quick and efficient
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