1953 September 23

Army Bans Kinsey Report on Women: Subject “Not Of Interest to GIs”


The U.S Army announced on this day that it would not place the Kinsey Report, Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (August, 20, 1953), in its 203 libraries in Europe. A spokesperson said the report “was not thought to be of general interest to G.I.s.” Seriously? The Air Force, on the other hand, said it would have at least one copy of the report in its libraries around the world.

The two Kinsey reports (Sexual Behavior in the Human Male was published on January 5, 1948) were major events in the history of sexuality in the United States, with important civil liberties ramifications. The reports helped to end the taboos on candid discussions of sexuality in America, along with the heavy-handed censorship of books, magazines and movies with sexually related subject matter. Both before and after publication of the two reports, the Kinsey Institute faced censorship and threats of prosecution because of its research into sexuality.

Read the two Kinsey reports: Alfred Kinsey, Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948); Alfred Charles Kinsey, Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (1953)

Read about Kinsey, the reports, and the controversies: James H. Jones, Alfred C. Kinsey: A Public/Private Life (1997)

Learn more about the changing status of women in the 1950s: Stephanie Coontz, A Strange Stirring: The Feminine Mystique and American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s (2011)

Explore the FBI files on Kinsey: http://vault.fbi.gov/Alfred%20Kinsey

Watch a harsh documentary on Alfred Kinsey: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tPhs_y-VKM8

Learn more about the history of the Kinsey Institute:  http://www.kinseyinstitute.org/about/history.html

Find a Day

Abortion Rights ACLU african-americans Alice Paul anti-communism Anti-Communist Hysteria Birth Control Brown v. Board of Education Censorship CIA Civil Rights Civil Rights Act of 1964 Cold War Espionage Act FBI First Amendment Fourteenth Amendment freedom of speech Free Speech Gay Rights Hate Speech homosexuality Hoover, J. Edgar HUAC Japanese American Internment King, Dr. Martin Luther Ku Klux Klan Labor Unions Lesbian and Gay Rights Loyalty Oaths McCarthy, Sen. Joe New York Times Obscenity Police Misconduct Same-Sex Marriage Separation of Church and State Sex Discrimination Smith Act Spying Spying on Americans Vietnam War Voting Rights Voting Rights Act of 1965 War on Terror Watergate White House Women's Rights Women's Suffrage World War I World War II Relocation Camps


Tell Us What You Think

We want to hear your comments, criticisms and suggestions!