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Free Speech on America's K-12 and College Campuses: Legal Cases from Barnette to Blaine covers the history of legal cases involving free speech issues on K-12 and college campuses, mostly during the fifty-year period from 1965 through 2015. While this book deals mostly with high school and college newspapers, it also covers religious issues (school prayer, distribution of religious materials, and use of school facilities for voluntary Bible study), speech codes, free speech zones, self-censorship due to political correctness, hate speech, threats of disruption and violence, and off-campus speech, including social media. Randall W. Bobbitt provides a representative sampling of cases spread across the five decades and across the subject areas listed above. Recommended for scholars of communication, education, political science, and legal studies.
"Liberty and the News" is Walter Lippman's classic account of how the press threatens democracy whenever it has an agenda other than the free flow of ideas. Arguing that there is a necessary connection between liberty and truth, Lippman excoriates the press, claiming that it exists primarily for its own purposes and agendas and only incidentally to promote the honest interplay of facts and ideas. In response, Lippman sought to imagine a better way of cultivating the news.
A brilliant essay on a persistent problem of American democracy, "Liberty and the News" is still powerfully relevant despite the development of countless news sources unimagined when Lippman first published it in 1920. The problems he identifies--the self-importance of the press, the corrosion of rumors and innuendo, and the spinning of the news by political powers--are still with us, and they still threaten liberty. By focusing on the direct and necessary connection between liberty and truth, Lippmann's work helps to clarify one of the most pressing predicaments of American democracy today.
As seen on The Daily Show, July 24
State secrets, warrantless investigations and wiretaps, signing statements, executive privilege -- the executive branch wields many tools for secrecy. Since the middle of the twentieth century, presidents have used myriad tactics to expand and maintain a level of executive branch power unprecedented in this nation's history.
Most people believe that some degree of governmental secrecy is necessary. But how much is too much? At what point does withholding information from Congress, the courts, and citizens abuse the public trust? How does the nation reclaim rights that have been controlled by one branch of government?
With Presidential Secrecy and the Law, Robert M. Pallitto and William G. Weaver attempt to answer these questions by examining the history of executive branch efforts to consolidate power through information control. They find the nation's democracy damaged and its Constitution corrupted by staunch information suppression, a process accelerated when "black sites," "enemy combatants," and "ghost detainees" were added to the vernacular following the September 11, 2001, terror strikes.
Tracing the current constitutional dilemma from the days of the imperial presidency to the unitary executive embraced by the administration of George W. Bush, Pallitto and Weaver reveal an alarming erosion of the balance of power. Presidential Secrecy and the Law will be the standard in presidential powers studies for years to come.
In this book, Richard Moon puts forward an account of freedom of expression that emphasizes its social character. Such freedom does not simply protect individual liberty from state interference; it also protects the individual's freedom to communicate with others. It is the right of the individual to communicate: an activity that is deeply social in character, and that involves socially created languages and the use of community resources, like parks, streets, and broadcast stations. Moon argues that recognition of the social dynamic of communication is critical to understanding the potential value and harm of language and to addressing questions about the scope and limits on one's rights to freedom of expression.
Moon examines the tension between the demands for freedom of expression and the structure of constitutional adjudication in the Canadian context. The book discusses many of the standard freedom of expression issues, such as the regulation of advertising, election spending ceilings, the restriction of hate promotion and pornography, state compelled expression, freedom of the press, access to state and private property and state support for expression. It examines several important Supreme Court of Canada decisions including Irwin Toy, Dolphin Delivery, RJR Macdonald, Keegstra and Butler.
Should "hate speech" be made a criminal offense, or does the First Amendment oblige Americans to permit the use of epithets directed against a person's race, religion, ethnic origin, gender, or sexual preference? Does a campus speech code enhance or degrade democratic values? When the American flag is burned in protest, what rights of free speech are involved? In a lucid and balanced analysis of contemporary court cases dealing with these problems, as well as those of obscenity and workplace harassment, acclaimed First Amendment scholar Kent Greenawalt now addresses a broad general audience of readers interested in the most current free speech issues.
As the world looked on in horror at the Paris terror attacks of January and November 2015, France found itself at the centre of a war that has split across nations and continents. The attacks set in motion a steady creep towards ever more repressive state surveillance, and have fuelled the resurgence of the far right across Europe and beyond, while leaving the left dangerously divided. These developments raise profound questions about a number of issues central to contemporary debates, including the nature of national identity, the limits to freedom of speech, and the role of both traditional and social media. After Charlie Hebdo brings together an international range of scholars to assess the social and political impact of the Paris attacks in Europe and beyond. Cutting through the hysteria that has characterised so much of the initial commentary, it seeks to place these events in their wider global context, untangling the complex symbolic web woven around 'Charlie Hebdo' to pose the fundamental question - how best to combat racism in our supposedly `post-racial' age?
Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, and Chelsea Manning are key figures in the struggles playing out in our democracies over internet use, state secrets, and mass surveillance in the age of terror. When not decried as traitors, they are seen as whistle-blowers whose crucial revelations are meant to denounce a problem or correct an injustice. Yet, for Geoffroy de Lagasnerie, they are much more than that. Snowden, Assange, and Manning are exemplars who have reinvented an art of revolt. Consciously or not, they have inaugurated a new form of political action and a new identity for the political subject. Anonymity as practiced by WikiLeaks and the flight and requests for asylum of Snowden and Assange break with traditional forms of democratic protest. Yet we can hardly dismiss them as acts of cowardice. Rather, as Lagasnerie suggests, such solitary choices challenge us to question classic modes of collective action, calling old conceptions of the state and citizenship into question and inviting us to reformulate the language of critical philosophy. In the process, he pays homage to the actions and lives of these three figures.
Convinced that sexual immorality and unstable gender norms were endangering national recovery after World War One, German lawmakers drafted a constitution in 1919 legalizing the censorship of movies and pulp fiction, and prioritizing social rights over individual rights. These provisions enabled legislations to adopt two national censorship laws intended to regulate the movie industry and retail trade in pulp fiction. Both laws had their ideological origins in grass-roots anti-'trash' campaigns inspired by early encounters with commercial mass culture and Germany's federalist structure. Before the war, activists characterized censorship as a form of youth protection. Afterwards, they described it as a form of social welfare. Local activists and authorities enforcing the decisions of federal censors made censorship familiar and respectable even as these laws became a lightning rod for criticism of the young republic. Nazi leaders subsequently refashioned anti-'trash' rhetoric to justify the stringent censorship regime they imposed on Germany.
This title presents a critical examination of the contemporary debates in Europe and the international community over 'incitement to religious hatred' and the 'defamation of religions'. Today, a new notion of blasphemy has arrived on the international political scene in the form of United Nations resolutions condemning the "defamation of religions" and national laws restricting religiously offensive speech. In the days of Moses, God defended His own honour. In the biblical worldview, blasphemy was the direct verbal abuse of the divine person, punishable by death. For the medievals, it was taken as a threat to civil order. Unlike the biblical and medieval discourse, however, this new debate turns on the feelings of the believers themselves. Meanwhile, artists and public figures face trial for "inciting religious hatred". What is the proper balance between freedom and equal respect for persons? When, if ever, is religious offense not only legally permissible but morally appropriate in a pluralistic democracy? "The Future of Blasphemy" goes beyond the headlines to critically examine the contemporary debates in the international community. It advances a balanced defence of freedom of expression that gives full consideration to the value of equality along with freedom of conscience and religion.
Dangerous Talk examines the 'lewd, ungracious, detestable, opprobrious, and rebellious-sounding' speech of ordinary men and women who spoke scornfully of kings and queens. Eavesdropping on lost conversations, it reveals the expressions that got people into trouble, and follows the fate of some of the offenders. Introducing stories and characters previously unknown to history, David Cressy explores the contested zones where private words had public consequence. Though 'words were but wind', as the proverb had it, malicious tongues caused social damage, seditious words challenged political authority, and treasonous speech imperilled the crown. Royal regimes from the house of Plantagenet to the house of Hanover coped variously with 'crimes of the tongue' and found ways to monitor talk they deemed dangerous. Their response involved policing and surveillance, judicial intervention, political propaganda, and the crafting of new law. In early Tudor times to speak ill of the monarch could risk execution. By the end of the Stuart era similar words could be dismissed with a shrug. This book traces the development of free speech across five centuries of popular political culture, and shows how scandalous, seditious and treasonable talk finally gained protection as 'the birthright of an Englishman'. The lively and accessible work of a prize-winning social historian, it offers fresh insight into pre-modern society, the politics of language, and the social impact of the law.
Rather than abstract philosophical discussion or yet another analysis of legal doctrine, Speech and Silence in American Law seeks to situate speech and silence, locating them in particular circumstances and contexts and asking how context matters in facilitating speech or demanding silence. To understand speech and silence we have to inquire into their social life and examine the occasions and practices that call them forth and that give them meaning. Among the questions addressed in this book are, Who is authorized to speak? And what are the conditions that should be attached to the speaking subject? Are there occasions that call for speech and others that demand silence? What is the relationship between the speech act and the speaker? Taking these questions into account helps readers understand what compels speakers and what problems accompany speech without a known speaker, allowing us to assess how silence speaks and how speech renders the silent more knowable.
Communications giants like Google, Comcast, and AT&T enjoy
increasingly unchecked control over speech. As providers of
broadband access and Internet search engines, they can control
online expression. Their online content restrictions--from
obstructing e-mail to censoring cablecasts--are considered legal
because of recent changes in free speech law.
"You have the right to remain silent." These words, drawn from the Supreme Court's famous decision in Miranda v. Arizona, have had a tremendous impact on the public imagination. But what a strange right this is. Of all the activities that are especially worthy of protection, that define us as human beings, foster human potential, and symbolize human ambition, why privilege silence?This thoughtful and iconoclastic book argues that silence can be an expression of freedom. A defiant silence demonstrates determination, courage, and will. Martyrs from a variety of faith traditions have given up their lives rather than renounce their god. During the Vietnam era, thousands of anonymous draft resisters refused to take the military oath that was a prelude to participating in what they believed was an immoral war. These silences speak to us. They are a manifestation of connection, commitment, and meaning.This link between silence and freedom is apparent in a variety of different contexts, which Seidman examines individually, including silence and apology, silence and self-incrimination, silence and interrogation, silence and torture, and silence and death. In discussing the problem of apology, for example, the author argues that although apology plays a crucial role in maintaining the illusion of human connection, the right to not apologize is equally crucial. Similarly, prohibition against torture-so prominent in national debate since the events of Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib-is best understood as a right to silence, essential in preserving the distinction between mind and body on which human freedom depends.
Free Speech: Supreme Court Opinions from the Beginning to the Roberts Court is a curated collection of Supreme Court opinions on the topic of free speech. These opinions help students learn how justices think, reason, express themselves, wrestle with contentious issues, and reach decisions on them. The book covers a century of free speech opinions, from the classics to recent decisions by the Roberts Court, that address subversive and offensive speech, incitement to violence, obscenity, and whether corporations have First Amendment rights. It features many precedent-setting cases including Schenck v. United States (shouting "Fire!" in a crowded theater), the Pentagon Papers case, and Citizens United. Each opinion has been edited to eliminate unnecessary legal and procedural side issues and ensure accessibility for all readers. The opinions are framed by commentary that provides context and analysis to educate readers about the extent to which we have free speech and how the principles were established. Free Speech is well-suited to political science, history, rhetoric, communications, law, and legal studies courses, and is an excellent reference tool for legal practitioners.
Whether free speech is defended as a fundamental right that inheres in each individual, or as a guarantee that all of society's members will have a voice in democratic decision-making, or as 'marketplace of ideas' that facilitates the emergence of truth by allowing vigorous competition among diverse points of view, the central role of expressive freedom in liberating the human spirit is undeniable. Enshrined in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution with a brevity that would belie its subsequent history of intricate judicial parsing, freedom of expression will, as the essays in this volume illuminate, encounter new and continuing controversies in the twenty-first century. Advances in digital technology raise pressing questions regarding freedom of speech and, with it, intellectual property and privacy rights. As the expansion of the Internet tests, and often confounds, legal statutes and precedents established in the era of the printing press, cyberspace looms as a relatively uncharted frontier for free speech and copyright law. Campaign finance reform limits the formerly sacrosanct category of 'political speech', while campus speech codes have spawned debates over '
aThe book constitutes a good contribution to our professional
knowledge, and it is a must readinga
"Anyone who has not read A Distant Heritage cannot know the
history of freedom of speech. This splendid book, based on
excellent research, fills a void on the subject of seditious
utterance and is a valuable corrective, as well as a substantial
addition to, all previous works touching that subject."
"A remarkably clear, concise history . . . Eldridge has provided
impressive documentation of an often misunderstood, and vitally
important, aspect of American History."
"Larry Eldrige's superb scholarship greatly expands our
knowledge of how free speech took root in the American colonies.
This exceptional book offers both engaging reading and new insights
into the development of a fundamental right. "
"Larry Eldridge has crafted a major reinterpretation of the
expansion of political speech in the American colonies. What is
especially impressive is Eldridge's ability to find support for his
thesis in both the growing stability of colonial society and the
powerful upheavals that convulsed it. This is an original,
provocative, and penetrating contribution to the literature on
freedom of speech, in the colonial or any other era."
"With "A Distant Heritage," Larry Eldridge joins a handful of
scholars probing a most important aspect of our free speech
heritage. . . Eldridge providesvital pieces to the puzzle of how
American earned the right to speak their minds. With meticulous
attention to detail, Eldridge traces the seventeenth century
development of free speech in colonial America, a process that
opened the way for citizens to criticize their government and that
established the foundation for both revolution and growth in
freedom of speech for generations to come."
Historians often rely on a handful of unusual cases to illustrate the absence of free speech in the colonies--such as that of Richard Barnes, who had his arms broken and a hole bored through his tongue for seditious words against the governor of Virginia. In this definitive and accessible work, Larry Eldridge convincingly debunks this view by revealing surprising evidence of free speech in early America.
Using the court records of every American colony that existed before 1700 and an analysis of over 1,200 seditious speech cases sifted from those records, A Distant Heritage shows how colonists experienced a dramatic expansion during the seventeenth century of their freedom to criticize government and its officials. Exploring important changes in the roles of juries and appeals, the nature of prosecution and punishment, and the pattern of growing leniency, Eldridge also shows us why this expansion occurred when it did. He concludes that the ironic combination of tumult and destabilization on the one hand, and steady growth and development on the other, made colonists more willing to criticize authority openly and officials less able to prevent it. That, in turn, established a foundation forthe more celebrated flowering of colonial dissent against English authority in the eighteenth century.
Steeped in primary sources and richly narrated, this is an invaluable addition to the library of anyone interested in legal history, colonial America, or the birth of free speech in the United States.
This is a history of the secret activities of the British
government in response to threats to the nation's well-being and
stability during the twentieth century. It is based on intensive
and widespread research in private and public archives and on
documents many of which have only recently come to light or been
This book is about Freedom of Speech and public discourse in the United States. Freedom of Speech is a major component of the cultural context in which we live, think, work, and write, generally revered as the foundation of true democracy. But the issue has a great deal more to do with social norms rooted in a web of cultural assumptions about the function of rhetoric in social organization generally, and in a democratic society specifically. The dominant, liberal notion of free speech in the United States, assumed to be self-evidently true, is, in fact, a particular historical and cultural formation, rooted in Enlightenment philosophies and dependent on a collection of false narratives about the founding of the country, the role of speech and media in its development, and the relationship between capitalism and democracy. Most importantly, this notion of freedom of speech relies on a warped sense of the function of rhetoric in democratic social organization. By privileging individual expression, at the expense of democratic deliberation, the liberal notion of free speech functions largely to suppress rather than promote meaningful public discussion and debate, and works to sustain unequal relations of power. The presumed democratization of the public sphere, via the Internet, raises more questions than it answers-who has access and who doesn't, who commands attention and why, and what sorts of effects such expression actually has. We need to think a great deal more carefully about the values subsumed and ignored in an uncritical attachment to a particular version of the public sphere. This book seeks to illuminate the ways in which cultural framing diminishes the complexity of free speech and sublimates a range of value-choices. A more fully democratic society requires a more critical view of freedom of speech.
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