Freedom of Expression

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Freedom of expression or speech is widely held to be both a moral right and a legal right. John Milton (1608-74) defended it in Britain in the seventeenth century, and the U.S. Constitution's Bill of Rights (1791) made it part of the First Amendment. Almost every modern constitution and international protocol regarding human rights recognizes freedom of expression. However, the justifications for and the contours of freedom of speech are much mooted. Moreover, there are some, even in liberal democracies, who deny this freedom special importance, whereas others deny its coherence as a concept.




Alexander, L. A. (2012). Freedom of Expression. In Encyclopedia of Applied Ethics (pp. 339–344). Elsevier Inc.

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