'The Catcher in the Rye' [1951] by JD Salinger

Signet Books, New York1953

National Archives of Australia

National Archives of Australia
CANBERRA, Australia

JD Salinger’s ‘The Catcher in the Rye’ (first published in 1951) was banned in Australia from 1956 to 1957.

During most of the 20th century Australia was one of the strictest censors in the western world. Most imported publications were closely inspected before being released, and Australia would frequently ban what was considered suitable reading in England, Europe and America.

The Commonwealth Customs Department, which had the authority to prohibit imports under the Customs Act 1901, kept a reference library of around 15,000 books, magazines and comics banned in Australia between the 1920s and the 1970s. Some of the titles are rare editions, and many are no longer in print.

This valuable collection, held by the National Archives, reflects the social attitudes and morals of the period and also provides a fascinating insight into how these have changed.


  • Title: 'The Catcher in the Rye' [1951] by JD Salinger
  • Creator: Signet Books, New York
  • Date Created: 1953
  • External Link: Find out more - click here
  • Citation: NAA: C3059, THE CATCHER IN THE RYE

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