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Intellectual Freedom, Censorship and Propaganda. LIBR 150 Spring 2003 Week 7 Supplement. Intellectual Freedom.

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intellectual freedom censorship and propaganda

Intellectual Freedom, Censorship and Propaganda

LIBR 150

Spring 2003

Week 7


intellectual freedom
Intellectual Freedom
  • What is it?“Intellectual freedom is the right of every individual to both seek and receive information from all points of view without restriction. It provides for free access to all expressions of ideas through which any and all sides of a question, cause or movement may be explored.” - American Library Association
  • Guaranteed by the First Amendment
    • One of the fundamental civil liberties in the Bill of Rights
intellectual freedom cont
Intellectual Freedom - cont.
  • Why is it important?
    • Fundamental core of democratic society - ability to share ideas freely
    • Basis of scholarship and research on a college campus - freedom to discuss ideas in an educational setting
    • Rights guaranteed by a professor’s tenure
  • Why is it especially an issue today?
    • Criticisms of post-9/11 legislation that many feel are impinging on citizen’s intellectual freedom, such as the Patriot Acts (I and II)
    • Hate speech issues on college campuses
  • What is it?“Censorship is the suppression of ideas and information that certain persons—individuals, groups or government officials—find objectionable or dangerous....Censors try to use the power of the state to impose their view of what is truthful and appropriate, or offensive and objectionable, on everyone else....The censor wants to prejudge materials for everyone.”- American Library Association
censorship cont
Censorship - cont.
  • Why is it important?
    • Do you want your intellectual choices limited before you can decide for yourself?
    • Opportunities for abuse exist when the government has the ability to limit ideas
    • Often first step taken by totalitarian governments - limiting of government information and the press
  • Why is it especially an issue today?
    • War against terrorism - what is the balance between fighting terrorist vs. the right for the public to know
    • Explosion of amount and types of information - who can get access to what, especially on the Internet?
more information
More Information
  • American Library Association -Intellectual Freedom and Censorship Q&A-
  • What is it?“Persuasive communication by means of any or all available media, designed to change or reinforce in predetermined directions opinions on certain topics held by its audience, particularly through emotional rather objective message content” (Roberts & Edwards, 1991, p. 113).- Roberts, G., & Edwards A. (1991). A new dictionary of political analysis. London: Edward Arnold.
propaganda cont
Propaganda - cont.
  • Why is it important?
    • Need to evaluate governmental information, in the war against terrorism, in order to make informed decisions on how the battle is fought
  • To learn more and evaluate
    • Cole, R. (Ed.) (1998). The encyclopedia of propaganda (Vols. 1-3). Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe.
      • call number HM263.E53 1998 (reference collection)