Editorial: Why Free Speech?

Article


Patel, P., Wemyss, G. and Assiter, A. 2022. Editorial: Why Free Speech? Feminist Dissent. 6, pp. 1-38. https://doi.org/10.31273/fd.n6.2022.1261
AuthorsPatel, P., Wemyss, G. and Assiter, A.
Abstract

Many of us struggle to make sense of what is without doubt a deepening global socio-economic and political crisis, and at the heart of this crisis lies an unprecedented and multi-directional assault on freedom of speech. But what is free speech? How should it be exercised and to what ends? These are more difficult questions to navigate in contexts of growing divisions in society, the crises of state governabilities, people’s governmentalities and disparities in power and wealth. Debates about freedom of speech are not new; however, the form they take now seems particularly vindictive and violent. Across the world, we are witness to disturbing moves to curtail free speech in liberal democracies and totalitarian states alike and among left wing as well as right wing movements. As recent events show, free speech is the first casualty of all forms of authoritarianism including religious fundamentalism. And from this flow a range of other crackdowns on civil society and serious human rights violations that cannot be challenged. This is why the debate on freedom of speech has become increasingly urgent.

JournalFeminist Dissent
Journal citation6, pp. 1-38
ISSN2398-4139
Year2022
PublisherDepartment of English and Comparative Literary Studies, University of Warwick
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Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.31273/fd.n6.2022.1261
Publication dates
Online09 Dec 2022
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Deposited26 Jan 2023
Copyright holder© 2022 Pragna Patel, Georgie Wemyss, Alison Assiter
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