SOAS University of London

Is Free Speech Racist?

Dr. Gavan Titley, Maynooth University

Date: 28 October 2020Time: 3:00 PM

Finishes: 28 October 2020Time: 5:00 PM

Venue: Virtual Event

Type of Event: Virtual Webinar

The question of free speech is never far from the headlines, and in these headlines it is frequently declared to be in crisis. These crises are declared in societies marked by abundant communication, and take shape less around material and governmental threats to expression than around controversies hinging on ‘what can be said’ about particular political, cultural and social issues. This lecture examines the centrality of race to these putative crises, and discusses three interconnecting dimensions discussed in Is Free Speech Racist? (Polity, 2020): the postracial refusal of closure; the articulation of freedom of speech as a question of culture; and the vulnerability of dominant public understandings of freedom of speech to political capture.


Dr. Dr Gavan Titley is Senior Lecturer in the Department of Media Studies, Maynooth University, and a Docent in the Swedish School of Social Science, University of Helsinki. His other books include  The Crises of Multiculturalism: Racism in a Neoliberal Age, with Alana Lentin (2011, Zed Books), After Charlie Hebdo: Terror, Racism, Free Speech (ed. 2017, Zed Books) and Racism and Media (2019, Sage Publications). 

This event will take place on Zoom. To attend, please follow this link. Passcode: h?z42zTD^n. Meeting ID: 962 7751 4351

Organiser: Dr. Dina Matar, Chair, Centre for Global Media and Communication

Contact email: dm27@soas.ac.uk