Through the case study of the publishing and banning of the second edi- tion of the book Mīlestības vārdā (1982, In the Name of Love) by the Latvian physician Jānis Zālītis (1933–2007), the article aims to analyse the changed understanding among medical educators and officials of the Latvian Communist Party on limits of what could be promoted in a handbook on sex education in the early 1980s. The author of the handbook and the publishing house were convinced that the degree of explicitness of the content of the sex education books already published was sufficient to risk expanding it with drawings of sex positions, despite the fact that the message of the illustrations did not correspond to the thesis of the conservative sexual agenda prevailing in the Soviet Union that sexual intercourse should take place only within marriage. Drawings by Edgars Ozoliņš clearly conveyed the message of pleasure and enjoyment, but they did not explicitly state that the woman and man enjoying penetrative sex were in a marital relationship as husband and wife. The article will argue that the decision to destroy the book was ethe nforced by the decision of the Burau of the Central Committee of the Latvian Communist Party of August 17, 1982, and promoted by its First Secretary (1966–1984) Augusts Voss, who called the book pornographic and influenced by Western ideology and harmful to Soviet ideology. The paper will establish that the destruction of the book Mīlestības vārdā shows that not only Zālītis’ ideas about what was and was not permissible in promoting sexual knowledge differed from the Soviet conservative sexual agenda, but that there was also a diversity of opinions within the Soviet Latvian nomenklatura.

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