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The Scandal of Scientology

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The Scandal of Scientology is a critical exposé book about the Church of Scientology, written by Paulette Cooper and published by Tower Publications, in 1971.

In 2007, Cooper wrote about the events that occurred as a result of her original publication of an article called "The Scandal of Scientology" in Queen, in 1968.[1] In the article "The Scandal of the Scandal of Scientology," in Byline, Cooper commented on her motivation for writing the book: "I had a master's degree in psychology and had studied comparative religion at Harvard for a summer and what I learned during my research about the group founded by L. Ron Hubbard was both fascinating and frightening. The story cried out to be told."

[edit] Operation Freakout

Main article: Operation FreakoutThe book earned Cooper negative attention from members of the Church, and she was subsequently the target not only of litigation but a harassment campaign known as Operation Freakout,[3] the goal of which was to deter Cooper from criticism of Scientology by having her "incarcerated in a mental institution or jail or at least to hit her so hard that she drops her attacks".[4] Members of the church sent itself forged bomb threats, purportedly from Cooper,[5] using her typewriter and paper with her fingerprints on it; further plans included bomb threats to be sent to Henry Kissinger. The Church's campaign was discovered when the FBI raided Scientology offices in 1977 and recovered documents relating to the operation.[6]

In June 2007 Paulette Cooper wrote about her experience with the Church of Scientology and Operation Freakout from "beginning to end" for the first time.[7]

[edit] Attempt to remove book from libraries

The Church of Scientology of Canada attempted to suppress the book in libraries in Canada. In June 1974, libraries were advised that if they do not remove the books Scientology: The Now Religion, Inside Scientology, The Scandal of Scientology and The Mind Benders from their shelves, they would be named in a lawsuit[8]. Two different library boards in Ontario, Canada had been served with writs[8].

After obtaining out-of-court settlements of USD$7,500 and USD$500 and apologies from the publishers of two of the works (Dell Publishing and Tower Publications), Scientology further threatened to sue any library or bookstore that carried them[9]. After certain libraries in Canada refused to remove the books from their shelves, they were sued by Scientology[9]. One Canadian library reported the theft of a book critical of Scientology from its shelves[9].

These incidents were later reported in a chronological timeline of censorship in British Columbia[10].

[edit] Reception, use in other works

The Los Angeles Times described Cooper's work as a "scathing" look at Scientology.[11] The Charleston Gazette called the book: "a fascinating, 220-page paperback expose."[12]

The book was used as a reference in Jon Atack's later work, A Piece of Blue Sky[13]. Atack wrote: "I happened upon the hard-to-find Scandal of Scientology by Paulette Cooper. Now I was fascinated, and started collecting everything I could get my eager hands on - magazine articles, newspaper clippings, government files, anything."[13] Later, when A Piece of Blue Sky was dropped from Amazon.com listings in a controversial move, this was compared to court actions that initially limited distribution of The Scandal of Scientology.[14]

J. Gordon Melton recommended reading both Cooper's book and the church's refutation, False Report Correction/The Scandal of Scientology by Paulette Cooper, for "insight" into the Scientology controversy in his 1978 work, The Encyclopedia of American Religions.[15] ==

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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at The Scandal of Scientology. The list of authors can be seen in the page history.

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