I think this article is very pertinent to our discussion of comics. It discusses censorship in comics in the mid-20th century in a very balanced way. One possible criticism of it is that it doesn’t separate the medium/grammar of comics from the content of comics. Anyway money quote:

In the two years after Wertham’s book came out, more than a dozen publishers and hundreds of cartoonists left the field. Those publishers that remained were severely restricted by a self-imposed code that prevented comics from publishing anything but the most anodyne kiddies’ fare. Only with the rise of graphic novels in the last few years have comics recovered from the stigma of the Wertham years. For Hajdu, the comic-book crackdown was a “purge,” a precursor to later panics over rock music and video games.