Free Speech and Censorship: A Documentary and Reference Guide

Greenwood. Feb. 2022. 370p. ISBN 9781440865381. $110. REF
Freedom of speech—and its nemesis, censorship—has been a topic of vital importance and concern to the United States ever since 1791, when the Founders included it as part of the First Amendment to the Constitution. Freedom of speech is still a concern, as books continue to be banned from school curricula or removed from school libraries, and as peaceful protestors are arrested. Here Eastman (Shaping the Immigration Debate) explores the subject in detail. In six chronological sections, she collects 56 key documents, including pertinent Supreme Court decisions as well as dissenting opinions and amicus briefs; lawsuits and decisions in state courts; letters; and even tweets (a selection of former president Donald Trump’s regarding the NFL National Anthem controversy). Basic information is included about each document—its date of publication or creation, its source, and its significance—and Eastman also offers an analysis of each document’s historical context and impact. Some extremely lengthy documents are carefully abridged, with their key points and meaning maintained. An extensive bibliography and index conclude the book.
VERDICT An important addition to any reference collection.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing