1927 October 14

Do Pajamas = Nudity? New York City DA Threatens Prosecutions


New York City District Attorney Banton on this day threatened to prosecute theaters for “stage nudity,” which he explained meant women on stage in pajamas, which he regarded as “the nearest thing to nudity.” Some recent plays, he added, had contained some “rather frank situations and dialogue on sex questions,” which he regarded as possibly objectionable. DA Banton, as reported in the New York Times, was extremely vague about what exactly breached the law, and for example, refused to give a definition of “nudity.” On the one hand he asserted, “I am not a censor,” while also declaring that “The New York stage must be rid of naked women.”

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