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A collection of essays dealing with the extent to which freedom of speech receives recognition and protection in Australian law. It does not purport to cover this huge topic. Instead, it seeks to illustrate some of the ways in which freedom of speech is protected by law and, through examining various instances of legal restriction on the content of what may be published, to explore and assess the scope and limits of that protection.;The broad theme of the work is, in the words of the title, that freedom of speech is indeed a ""delicate plant"" within Australian law. It is alive as an important value to be protected, and it is growing. But the plant needs to be nurtured. It is not so robust and strongly established that it could never wither away on account of destructive or unsympathetic treatment on the part of legislatures, governments and courts.