Essay Title: 

Freedom of Speech In Film

April 1, 2016 | Author: | Posted in american history, history


The American doctrine of freedom of speech , as articulated in the Bill of Rights , is 200 years old

The absolutist doctrine of freedom of speech originates in the arguments and discussions of Pierre Bayle ( 1647- 1706 . Although Bayle has long been seen as a major figure in literary studies and the history of ideas , his contributions to philosophy have , until recently , largely been ignored in the English-speaking world . Philosophers have , however become more knowledgeable about Bayle in some measure because of the writings of A . A [banner_entry_middle]

. Luce and Richard Popkin , writings in which the profound impact of Bayle ‘s thought on both Berkeley and Hume is made evident .[1]

Bayle ‘s monumental Commentaire philosophique ‘ [2] appears to be written as a response to the death of his brother . Given the circumstances , it is a remarkable document . Published initially in 1686 and 1687 , it is as close to being a complete defense of religious toleration as appears in the seventeenth or any other century . I believe it also contains the first articulation of a truly “absolutist ” theory of freedom of speech

The history of the First Amendment to the U .S . Constitution is the history of attempts to withdraw what had been promised . Even before the end of the eighteenth century , Congress passed series of direct attacks on freedom of speech (and of the press ) with the Alien and Sedition acts ( 1798 , thereby beginning the long tradition of subversion paranoia that , from that day to this , has been a hallmark of American political discourse . Alexis de Tocqueville detected a source of the problem 160 years ago “I know no country in which there is so little true independence of mind and freedom of discussion as in America . The majority raises very formidable barriers to the liberty of opinion within these barriers an author may write whatever he s , but he will repent it if he ever step beyond them “[3]

During Clinton – Levinsky scandal some experts focused on a practical issue , advising people be careful what they say . People think that if they hear something on TV or in the film , they can say it at work (without fear of the legal liability . But that , of course , is not the case ‘[4]

Of course , freedom of speech must not create any form of hostile invironment , based on race , religion , sex and so on . People using their right for freedom cannot produce any form of discrimination of blacks or Jews or women

There can be some restrictions put upon freedom during the state of war and other specific sircumstances . I have no doubt that there were instances in the 1960s where opponents of the American invasion of Vietnam violated the freedom of speech rights of others and that some of the rhetoric of the day had a McCarthyite ring . As . Searle once said “To accuse a professor of conducting secret war research for the Defense Department nowadays has the same delicious impact that accusations of secret Communist… [banner_entry_footer]


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