Political culture, flag use and freedom of speech

Gelber, Katharine (2012) Political culture, flag use and freedom of speech. Political Studies, 60 1: 163-179. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9248.2011.00893.x

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Author Gelber, Katharine
Title Political culture, flag use and freedom of speech
Journal name Political Studies   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0032-3217
Publication date 2012-03
Year available 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1467-9248.2011.00893.x
Open Access Status
Volume 60
Issue 1
Start page 163
End page 179
Total pages 17
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Abstract Flag use generates passionate debates that fundamentally turn on questions of the appropriate extent and limits of freedom of speech. The national flag is a natural and forceful medium with which to express one's views about a nation. Yet its use in this way also generates controversy and emotionally charged reactions. The purpose of this article is to assess attitudes in political culture towards flag use in the context of wider freedom of speech considerations. By analysing events in Australia, the United States and New Zealand, the article argues that public responses to flag use as a medium of political expression demonstrate a flawed understanding of the meaning, import and effect of freedom of speech and its limits. This has significant implications, exposing the extent of fragility of freedom of speech on controversial issues, and its persistence despite differences between jurisdictions in the manner and extent of free speech protection.
Keyword Free speech
Flag burning
New Zealand
United States
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Article first published online: 1 JUL 2011

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Political Science and International Studies Publications
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Created: Fri, 10 Feb 2012, 10:33:37 EST by Dr Katharine Gelber on behalf of School of Political Science & Internat'l Studies