“Amy Werbel’s Lust on Trial offers a brilliant analysis of the life and times of Anthony Comstock, the fiercely religious moralist who led the national campaign to rid the United States of sexual expression from 1873 until his death in 1915. As Werbel powerfully demonstrates, Comstock’s efforts to persuade the nation that such expression “corrupts the mind . . . and damns the soul” perilously threatened our nation’s separation of church and state. This lesson in how religious fanaticism can destroy our freedom is now more important than ever.”
– Geoffrey R. Stone, Edward H. Levi Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, and author of Sex and the Constitution: Sex, Religion and Law from America’s Origins to the Twenty-First Century and Perilous Times: Free Speech in Wartime: From the Sedition Act of 1798 to the War on Terrorism.
“Amy Werbel probably now knows more about Anthony Comstock than anyone alive today. (And oh, how deliciously unpleasant some of that knowledge is!) There’s a sense of discovery that keeps this narrative moving.”
– Susan Jacoby, author of Strange Gods: A Secular History of Conversion, The Age of American Unreason and Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism