Voltaire's comment--"I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it"--is frequently quoted by defenders of free speech. Yet it is rare to find someone prepared to defend all freedom of speech, especially if the views expressed are obnoxious or obviously false. So where do we draw the line? How important is our right to freedom of speech? In this accessible and up-to-date Very Short Introduction, Nigel Warburton covers a wide range of controversial free-speech issues, from Holocaust denial and pornography to the status of modern copyright law. The book offers a concise guide to many of the vexing issues concerning our right to speak freely, including: Should a civilized society set limits on freedom of speech? How can we balance free speech with the sensitivities of religious and minority groups? How have digital technology and the Internet changed the debate? About the Series: Combining authority with wit, accessibility, and style, Very Short Introductions offer an introduction to some of life's most interesting topics. Written by experts for the newcomer, they demonstrate the finest contemporary thinking about the central problems and issues in hundreds of key topics, from philosophy to Freud, quantum theory to Islam.
About the Author
Nigel Warburton is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the Open University. He is the author of the bestselling Philosophy: The Basics.