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Yttrandefrihetens dilemman: Debatten om hetspropaganda, mediekoncentration samt personlig integritet mellan 1940- och 2000-tal
Uppsala University, Humanistisk-samhällsvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
2004 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)Alternative title
The dilemmas of free speech : The debate about hate speech, media concentration and the integrity of the person between the 1940s and the 2000s (English)
Abstract [en]

This thesis focuses on different types of value conflicts that have been actualized by proposals of legislation on freedom of speech. The thesis analyses three different debates which each relate to a different type of value conflict. An important objective of the study is to discern what fundamental values underlie the concern for upholding freedom of speech in a democratic society. Those fundamental values have been formulated as three type-arguments: the argument from democracy, the argument from truth, and the argument from autonomy respectively.

The first type of free speech dilemma is represented by the debate around a legal clause on the prohibition of racist hate speech. The second type of free speech dilemma is illustrated by the debate on the concentration of the Swedish media. The third type of dilemma concerns the conflict between the law against the spreading of information regarding the individual on the Internet, and the constitutional right of information.

The findings of the thesis includes that the argument from democracy has been the most prominently invoked in the debates. However, most often the argument from democracy is used in a rather unprecise manner, and there occurs a quite frequent conflation of the concept of democracy with several other values considered important, e.g. the right not to be discriminated against. The prospects of finding a “unified” free speech theory in which all the type-arguments for free speech can be brought together does not seem good. The arguments for free speech are interdependent and can be ultimately assessed only in the context of a broader theory of the democratic system. Here it is argued that the theory of “deliberative democracy” in comparison with rival conceptions of democracy offers some valuable tools for a better interpretation of the conception of the right to free speech in a democratic system.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 2004. , 188 p.
Skrifter utgivna av Statsvetenskapliga föreningen i Uppsala, ISSN 0346-7538 ; 162
Keyword [en]
Political science, Freedom of speech, Freedom of information, Hate speech, Media concentration, Personal integrity, Rights, Truth, Autonomy, Value conflicts, Deliberative democracy
Keyword [sv]
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-4612ISBN: 91-554-6038-0OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-4612DiVA: diva2:165234
Public defence
2004-10-22, Brusewitzsalen, Badhuset, Gamla Torget 6, Uppsala, 10:15 (English)
Available from: 2004-09-30 Created: 2004-09-30 Last updated: 2009-03-20Bibliographically approved

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