Todd Landman explores the contradictions between the American Constitution and the freedoms it seeks to preserve.
Bill Snaddon describes Nigerian writers’ appeals to curb hate speech and ethnic stereotyping in a fragile nation.
Vanya Bhargav explores why Indian women are less free to express themselves through dress than Indian men.
Bill Snaddon discusses political reform in Nigeria and the prosecution of the killers of Nigerian writers and journalists.
Nicholas McGeehan explores restrictions on free speech and protest in the Arab Gulf states and the foreign policy responsibilities of Western governments.
Paul Cliteur and Tom Herrenberg, editors of a book on The Fall and Rise of Blasphemy Law, consider the changing nature of censorship.
Expression can be dangerous, but that should not necessarily make it a crime. Jeffrey Howard evaluates the best argument for banning hate speech.
Maja Sojref and Sarah Glatte explore the growing public disillusionment with the mainstream press in Germany.
Jonathan Leader Maynard examines the difficulties in assessing and managing the role of speech in violence.
Danyal Kazim explores the violent reaction to the YouTube video in Pakistan – starting with trying to access it from there.
In this interview for Free Speech Debate, renowned Philosophy Professor Rae Langton speaks about the value of philosophy for our understanding of free speech and discusses aspects of her work on pornography and the silencing of women.
Sarah Glatte explores the controversy over trigger warnings and asks whether they help or hinder free speech.
25 years after the fatwa and the fall of the Berlin Wall, Salman Rushdie discusses with Timothy Garton Ash whether there is now more or less freedom of expression in Europe, worrying developments in India and his critical view of Edward Snowden.
Samson Yuen and Kitty Ho argue that the stabbing of a former Hong Kong news editor is a symptom of a broader squeeze on the city’s freedoms.
John Donatich, the director of Yale University Press, explains and defends his decision not to include illustrations in Jytte Klausen’s book.
Professor Jytte Klausen analyses and criticises Yale University Press’s decision to remove images of Muhammad from her scholarly book on the Danish cartoons controversy.
Free speech scholar Eric Heinze identifies the main arguments for laws restricting hate speech and says none are valid for mature Western democracies.
Cherian George on how hate speech is gaining virulence in Asian countries such as Myanmar, and how peace-building workshops represent a positive step forward.
Katherine Bruce-Lockhart looks at the media’s role in two Kenyan elections and argues that peace and critical media coverage should not be mutually exclusive.
Marc-Antoine Dilhac recounts how he confronted anti-semitic prejudice in a French classroom, and argues that more good comes from an open debate about hate speech than from banning it.
University of Oslo professor Tore Slaatta describes a pioneering project to evaluate freedom of expression in a whole country.
Katie Engelhart speaks to Ahmad Akkari to find out why he apologised to one of the Danish cartoonists eight years after fuelling worldwide fury.
Stephen Meili examines the contrasting UK and US treatment of people who refuse to declare a political allegiance.
We regularly highlight comments that have made an impression on us. Antoon de Baets left an insightful response to Josie Appleton’s discussion of memory laws in France.
Nigel Warburton spoke with Timothy Garton Ash for Index on Censorship’s Free Speech Bites about the Free Speech Debate Project and global free speech standards.
In 1969, the U.S. Supreme Court made history by ruling that, to merit conviction, the violence advocated must be intended, likely and imminent. By Jeff Howard.
At the 2013 Jaipur Festival, Ian Buruma, Reza Aslan, Ahdaf Souief and Timothy Garton Ash, in conversation with Shoma Chaudhury, talk about the relationship between religion and politics and how to deal with religious threats to free speech.
Libyan media are crippled by their Gaddafi legacy. Without new regulations and, above all, bravery to stand up to violent intimidation, freedom of speech remains a distant dream, writes Jerry Timmins.
In 2006 the Kenyan police violently raided the offices and printing press of the Standard Group media organisation. What was the government afraid of seeing reported? Dominic Burbidge explores a revealing case.
On 10 October 2012 the Canadian teenager Amanda Todd committed suicide after years of cyber-bullying and harassment. Judith Bruhn describes a shocking case.
The historian and writer explains the reasoning behind author Salman Rushdie’s no-show at the 2012 Jaipur Literary Festival.
If the territorial dispute over Kashmir is not addressed through open debate, it may become “another Afghanistan”, says the Indian supreme court lawyer.
The award-winning Indian novelist and activist speaks to Manav Bhushan about the limits to free speech in India, including government censorship through the media and “goon squads”.
An Indian and a Pakistani student at Oxford reflect on how their countries covered the same story in their own ways. By Zahra Shah and Debanshu Mukherjee.
Aryeh Neier, human rights lawyer and president emeritus of the Open Society Foundations speaks about the future of free speech.
Jerry Timmins describes a new report on media in two post-conflict societies, and argues that countries like Britain should do more to support them.
In 2010 president Barack Obama signed a law banning videos that depict animal cruelty. Judith Bruhn explores whether this is a justified restriction to freedom of expression.
Dominic Burbidge discusses how Ushahidi’s transformative crowdsourcing techniques have alleviated crises in Kenya and beyond.
The Oxford Internet Institute’s Ian Brown writes from Azerbaijan, asking whether a country that suppresses online freedom should be allowed to host a gathering devoted to discussing it.
One of the United Arab Emirate’s most prominent human rights activists, Ahmed Mansoor was imprisoned in 2011 for criticising the country’s leadership. Here he discusses the death threats, defamation campaigns and physical attacks he continues to face for speaking his mind.
FSD’s Katie Engelhart sat in on this Frontline Club debate to discuss controversy surrounding the YouTube video Innocence of Muslims.
While a Pakistani minister offers a $100,000 reward for the murder of the man who made the notorious Innocence of Muslims video, a British Muslim responds in exemplary fashion to “this imbecile named Sam Bacile”. Timothy Garton Ash commends his clip.
Join us to debate the role internet platforms like YouTube should play in setting free speech agendas in your country, your language and across the world. Online editor Brian Pellot kicks off the discussion.
The speed and ubiquity of mobile devices have changed the context of “hate speech” online, writes Peter Molnar.
In 2011, a South African court banned the anti-apartheid song “Shoot the Boer” after ruling it hate speech, writes Nimi Hoffmann.
While China’s human flesh search engines can help reveal government corruption they can also be used to humiliate ordinary citizens, writes Judith Bruhn.
A pro-life campaigner and a pro-choice activist go head-to-head in this debate about the rise of US-style anti-abortion protests outside clinics in the UK.
Ukrainian cultural journals have become the target of “raiders” – shady groups working on behalf of powerful interests who use bogus property claims to close down businesses, says Mykola Riabchuk.
A senior advisor to German Chancellor Angela Merkel says it is only a matter of time before a climate scientist is killed, writes Maryam Omidi.
Killer Anders Behring Breivik’s testimony should be broadcast live to deter extremism, argues Anne Ardem, executive editor at Norwegian state broadcaster NRK.
Historian Halil Berktay discusses the denial by the Turkish state that the mass murders of hundreds of thousands of Armenians in 1915 constituted a genocide.
A Japanese video game that involved raping women was banned three years after its creation following an international outcry by women’s groups, writes Judith Bruhn.
In 2011, a group of young Egyptians organised public film screenings to expose military violence against civilians, writes Hebatalla Taha.
In March 2012, self-proclaimed jihadist Mohammed Merah strapped a camera to his chest before killing seven people in France. Al-Jazeera TV channel opted not to show the footage, writes Jeff Howard.
Hate speech legislation chills freedom of expression more than it protects vulnerable minorities. Free speech lawyer Ivan Hare takes issue with Jeremy Waldron.
In this interview with Timothy Garton Ash, Susan Benesch, senior fellow at the World Policy Institute, makes a distinction between hate speech and dangerous speech.
Jeremy Waldron, professor of social and political theory at Oxford University, argues the case for legislation against hate speech
A trio of human rights experts elaborate on the definition of dangerous speech and consider how hate speech is protected both in Europe and under the first amendment in the US.
“The one thing not at issue in the Jaipur controversy was some theologically motivated attack on the freedom of expression,” writes historian Faisal Devji.
Author Salman Rushdie cancelled his appearance at the Jaipur Literature Festival after being informed that “paid assassins from the Mumbai underworld” were out to kill him, writes Manav Bhushan
The execution of apostates should be annulled but insulting religion should be recognised as a crime, writes Iranian cleric Mohsen Kadivar.
Pakistani journalist Saleem Shahzad was found dead after publishing an article on the links between al-Qaida and Pakistan’s military, writes Ayyaz Mallick.
In 2009, Aasia Bibi, a Christian Pakistani woman was accused of blasphemy. The governor who called for a review of her case was killed two years later, writes Ayyaz Mallick.
For some, Valentine’s Day means chocolate and roses. For a group of Indian writers it has become an opportunity to reclaim freedom of expression in India.
Deposed president Mohamed Nasheed will always be remembered as the man who brought free speech to the Maldives, writes Maryam Omidi.