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Product Image For the Common Good: BP in B

For the Common Good: BP in B

BP in B is the first book project published by For The Common Good. The publication archives a series of rare fetish booklets that were surreptitiously circulated during the mid-50s by mail order, largely featuring photographs of famed pinup model Betty Page. The images document a loose narrative of serially staged bondage exploits, with subjects and photographer visibly learning to ply their craft together. The volume also captures the original advertising and typewritten texts — part nuts and bolts instructional, part pseudo-apologetic erotic prop — accompanying the visual fetish stories. Each of the 90 reproductions has been evaluated against multiple examples of the printed originals and conscientiously restored to maintain the aesthetic quality and intent.

The book’s abbreviated title omits critical information, mirroring a similar obfuscation in the interior images themselves. Concealing outfits were hand painted onto the images to cover the subjects’ original scanty attire in order to circumnavigate postal laws and political pressures. Although the models were not photographed naked, their underwear or bikini clad bodies and bare midriffs were leveraged as proof of indecency by regulators enforcing the staid mores of the era. The resultant painterly retouching is intermittently both artful and heavy handed, but passes largely unnoticed as part of a unified photographic whole until closer inspection.

This discretionary self-censorship was likely a reaction to the United States Post Office Department’s investigations into allegedly obscene and crime-inciting matter sent through the mails, as well as to the Senator Kefauver-chaired hearings of the United States Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency. Films like The Wild One (1953) and Rebel Without a Cause (1955) had propelled the image of the juvenile delinquent into the public consciousness, and in endeavoring to identify and quell the causes of the purported moral decay of American youth, conservative forces in the US Senate policed any media they could get purview over. The hearings famously created the comics codes, and the committee then further attempted to tie the discordant youth tribes and their deviant behaviors (inclusive of everything from talking back and listening to rock and roll, to gang crime) to pornographic access and influence. While the comics publishers had been forthcoming, the metro New York-based mail order businesses distributing fetish materials were more difficult to act against. It was ultimately the Postmaster General who leaned heavily on these shadowy concerns, at one point cutting off all of their incoming mail, and with it, the traffic of orders and income. Appeasements were made, though criminal allegations ultimately followed. The black and white brushstroke expurgations of BP in B are an artifact of a forgotten period of smutty small-publishing history, evidentiary concealments of a bizarre chronicle complete with improbable teenage gang alignments. BP in B is as much a book about painting as it is about photography or fetish.

*COVID-19 Notice: Order processing is slower than usual at this time due to safety and logistical issues surrounding the pandemic. In addition, mail carriers have informed us that shipping times are not guaranteed, and in some cases have been significantly delayed. Unfortunately these delays are out of our control. Thank you in advance for your patience. 

We really appreciate you shopping with us.  Below are our general policies.  We do our best to make our customers happy, so if you have a concern please feel free to contact us :)

Shipping

  • All shipping time frames are not guaranteed—after we hand your package to the mail service or shipping company, we are unable to control unforeseen delays on their end.
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    • TELFAR BAGS may take even longer than the above time frame during this time, up to 2 weeks to process and send out from our office due to high order volumes.  Priority shipments will be processed first, but ALL orders are shipping slower than usual.
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ORDER TOTAL STANDARD SHIPPING
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    Because of the tiny nature of our operation, we apologize for our limited return policy.

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