Jean-Jacques Pauvert’s ambition to bring erotic literature out of the shadows was fulfilled by way of many trials, bans and fines…
Among the key moments of that rich career as a publisher – and as an author, for Pauvert also wrote erotic texts – is the publication of Histoire d’O under the pseudonym of Pauline Réage.
Jean Paulhan prefaced the book, but that wasn’t enough protection.
The Supervisory Committee and the Special Committee for Books (1939 law) requested that legal proceedings be brought against this immoral book ‘where scenes of debauchery with two or several characters alternate with scenes of sexual cruelty’.
From 1955 onwards, several decrees banning the book prevented Maurice Girodias from diffusing the original version and the translation.