Compass: An Undergraduate Journal of American Political Ideas
Compass welcomes submissions on a rolling basis. We seek to publish essays by undergraduates at colleges and universities anywhere in the world on current American political issues understood in the broad contexts of political philosophy, history, literature, and culture. The journal encourages submissions from across academic disciplines and welcomes the use of various historical, philosophic, and empirical methods of analysis. This online journal aims to provide a space for the work of talented undergraduates who have original and well-articulated insights on important ideas and issues relating to American democracy.
Please submit your essays to firstname.lastname@example.org. Published essays will usually be 1500-2000 words in length. We encourage a lively style that is highly readable. This is a venue to relate original work, whether using interpretive textual analysis, archival work, quantitative findings, comparative historical analysis, or other methodological approaches. However, we ask that these findings not be delivered or expressed in the manner of a term paper to specialist professors but in a more journalistic fashion to a wider audience of readers eager to glean what’s interesting from your findings.
Once you have submitted your essay, the editorial team will work quickly to let you know if your piece will be appropriate for the journal and whether it requires revisions.
Below is an excerpt from the latest article published in Compass.
Should Pornography that Patently Objectifies Women be Banned
By Jared Kelly
Obscenity and pornography have been contentious issues in American courts. In 1964, Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart made one of the Supreme Court’s most memorable remarks in the decision of Jacobellis v. Ohio (378 U.S. 184, 1964) when he stated “I know it when I see it.” This was in reference to determining if hardcore pornography would be considered protected free speech under the Roth test (Gewirtz 1995, 1023). In the 1970s and 1980s a coalition of women in the United States formed the group Women Against Pornography (WAP) in an effort to ban pornography. WAP contained many notable feminists including Andrea Dworkin, Catharine MacKinnon, and Gloria Steinem who attempted to contest pornography through civil rights litigation for women. The WAP movement tried to curb the spread of pornography shops emerging in cities beginning in the 1970s. This proliferation of pornography coincided with the transition of pornography from a space of public interaction where individuals interacted with pornography in theatres, to a more intimate and private space where individuals could interact with pornography at home with new media such as commercial pornographic magazines, VHS, and Betamax.
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