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Freedom of Speech - JMMZ340
Anglický název: Freedom of Speech
Zajišťuje: Katedra severoamerických studií (23-KAS)
Fakulta: Fakulta sociálních věd
Platnost: od 2018
Semestr: zimní
E-Kredity: 6
Způsob provedení zkoušky: zimní s.:
Rozsah, examinace: zimní s.:1/1, Zk [HT]
Počet míst: neurčen / neurčen (15)
Minimální obsazenost: 5
Virtuální mobilita / počet míst: ne
Stav předmětu: nevyučován
Jazyk výuky: angličtina
Způsob výuky: prezenční
Poznámka: předmět je možno zapsat mimo plán
povolen pro zápis po webu
Garant: Tomáš Klvaňa, M.A., Ph.D.
Termíny zkoušek   Rozvrh   Nástěnka   
Sylabus - angličtina
Poslední úprava: Tomáš Klvaňa, M.A., Ph.D. (05.10.2017)

IMS FSV UK – Katedra severoamerických studií

Winter Semester 2017; Tuesday 15.30-16.50h; Room J3015



Tomáš Klvaňa, Ph D, M.A.(office hours: Tuesday 17-18h, or by appointment)


Freedom of Speech

Class Description

Freedom of expression is the basic right that in democracy undergirds all other rights and liberties. It is also one of the most contested rights, attacked from the left and right. Western in origin, it figures prominently in today’s globalizing discourse. Taking advantage of the historian Timothy Garton Ash’s theoretical framework of principles for a connected world, the course explores the assumptions and practical controversies related to free expression.

Desired Outcomes

Students will understand the phenomenon on several levels including political, practical, theoretical, religious and historic. They will demonstrate an ability disentangle current controversies surrounding free speech and see them from multiple perspectives. 

Assessment Components

10%   -- Class Attendance

20%   -- Class Activity

·         Discussion moderated by professor based on course reading, films and lectures

·         Possible short quizzes based on readings

·         Short student presentations

35% -- Midterm Examination (several short essay-type answers; closed book and notes: students will not be allowed to use any course or internet resources)

35% -- Final Examination (three hand-written essays in class; comprehensive; open notes and books: students are allowed to use the course resources)

A failure to submit or fulfill any of the above would result in the F grade for the course.

Assessment Expectations

Grade A: Excellent work demonstrating a critical and observant approach to the subject, sound research and an ability to express thoughts cogently and persuasively. Grade B: Very good work. Grade C: Satisfactory work. Grade F: Failure to achieve a passable standard.


A = 91-100, B = 81-90, C = 71-80, F = 70 and below

Required Text(s)

·         Timothy Garton Ash –Free Speech: Ten Principles for a Connected World. Yale University Press, 2016

·         Texts and videos from http://freespeechdebate.com/en/ and other sources. Some videos are listed in the course schedule. All are subject to change.





Week 1



Week 2



Civil Society Goes Global

In-class videos: Salman Rushdie

Required reading: Garton Ash (Post-Gutenberg, Cosmopolis and Ideals)


Week 3


The Principle of Principles

In-class videos: Noam Chomsky on the Internet Echo Chambers (excerpts)

Required reading: Garton Ash (Lifeblood)


Week 4



In-class videos: The Innocence of Muslims (excerpts)

Required reading: Garton Ash (Violence)


Week 5



Taboos, or No Taboos?

In-class videos: Rubin Report (excerpts)

Required reading: Garton Ash (Knowledge)


Week 6 – Nov 7




The Marketplace of Ideas: How will Brexit Change Central Europe (A combined class session with New York University students at the NYU building, at 15-16.20h, Malé náměstí 11, Praha 1, Mucha Classroom, 1st floor)

Required reading: Garton Ash (Journalism)




Week 7


Midterm Examination

The Marketplace of Ideas

In-class videos: Christina Hoff Sommers

Required reading: Garton Ash (Diversity)


Week 8

Religion: Are We Allowed to Hate Islam, Christianity and other Religions?

In-class videos: Christopher Hitchens

Required reading: Garton Ash (Religion)


Week 9


Private vs. Public Interest

In-class videos: Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Required reading: Garton Ash (Privacy)


Week 10



National Security

Required reading: Garton Ash (Secrecy)


Week 11

The Bullhorns of the Oligarchs

In-class film – Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press dir. by Brian Knappenberger (excerpts)

Required reading: Garton Ash (Icebergs)


Week 12


Course Review

Required reading: Garton Ash (Courage, Challenge)




January -- TBD




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