Photograph to contextualise a key debate on free speech and censorship. Keenan Malik's response to Anshuman Mondal, a lecturer in English at Brunel University, recently published an article on the academic website The Conversation criticising arguments for free speech. Advocates of free speech, of which Malik is a key specimen, were, Mondal claimed, trying to ‘shut up’ those who disagreed with them. Malik argues that this attenuates the right to protest to the point where it effectively becomes a dismissal of that right. That crying ‘censorship!’ makes the second of these invalid, hence the contradiction I identify in the first half of the article: the idea that free speech is threatened by free speech itself. Garry Clarkson’s photo of the burning of The Satanic Verses on a demonstration in Bradford, 1989 © Garry Clarkson.
|Publication status||Published - 5 Dec 2014|