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This book discusses the legal protection of speech in the UK, the USA, Germany and under the European Convention on Human Rights. The author contends that the meaning and scope of freedom of speech can only be properly understood against the background of the moral and political arguments for the protection of freedom of speech and its incorporation in constitutions.
On this basis, he analyzes the case law in the light of fundamental free speech principles. He also considers the types of expression and conduct which should be treated as ""speech"" for the purpose of a free speech clause, and whether freedom of speech requires the recognition of rights of access to the media or to hold meetings on public premises.
The book also examines the restrictions imposed on speech by laws of libel, obscenity and contempt of court, and is critical of the current state of English law, which compares unfavourably with the position in some other countries.;The book is aimed at first-degree and postgraduate law students and students of politics as well as interested non-specialist readers.