Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Free Speech and Fatwa event

I am on the panel for the following event.

Institute of Ideas and Bishopsgate Institute present:

FROM FATWA AND BOOK-BURNING TO JIHAD AND HATE LAWS: TWENTY YEARS OF 'FREE SPEECH WARS'


12 February: 19.00 - 21.00

Bishopsgate Institute, 230 Bishopsgate, London EC2M 4QH

In February 1989, five months after the publication of The Satanic Verses, Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa against its author Salman Rushdie. It is often seen as a pivital moment in shaping the landscape of contemporary Western society. So, twenty years on, what is the legacy of the most famous free speech controversy of modern times?

Kenan Malik, whose book From Fatwa to Jihad: the Salman Rushdie affair and its legacy will be published in February 2009, will explore the impact of the Rushdie affair on our perceptions of free speech, multiculturalism and Islam.

Claire Fox will chair a panel debating the issues and the audience will also have their say in what promises to be a lively discussion.

Tickets: £7/£5
Call Bishopsgate Institute on 020 7932 9220
www.bishopsgate.org.uk/events

2 comments:

anticant said...

Predictable, isn't it, that the overt attack on free speech comes mainly from Muslim sources.

The question I am always asking - not with any hostile intent, but simply because I want to know - is whether Islam is compatible with democracy as we understand it in the West?

Ophelia Benson said...

Highly appropriate, since the UN General Assembly has just passed a resolution saying that all countries should criminalize 'defamation of religions.'

http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO0811/S00421.htm