Freedom of Expression Debate

February 4, 2010

Intelligence Squared U.S. New York City, Oct. 18, 2006. Six journalists, professors and activists gathered to debate the proposition, "Freedom of expression must include the right to offend." For the Motion: Philip Gourevitch, Signe Wilkinson, Christopher Hitchens (Top row, left to right) Against the Motion: Daisy Khan, David Cesarani, Mari Matsuda (Bottom row, left to right) (1/11) (2/11) (3/11) (4/11) (5/11) (6/11) (7/11) (8/11) (9/11) (10/11) (11/11)


February 2007

Martin Amis discusses the mild anti-semitism of his own father, and gives his thoughts on Israel. He reads from Saul Bellow’s book on Israel, and suggests that there is a great deal of anxiety among Jews about the future of Israel. Christopher Hitchens, who only discovered he was Jewish in 1989, talks about the place of Judaism in history: about Voltaire, suspicion, Israel, and the Jewish diaspora. Martin Amis then discusses the Jewish concept of manhood, before going on to contemplate the effect of 9/11 on the Jewish community. Hitchens then touches on some moments that betray a prejudice against Jews that still lingers even after the Holocaust, including the claims made in America in 1989 that Jewish doctors were deliberately injecting black babies with Aids. He suggest that pejudice against Jews is different from other kinds, because it takes a pseudo-intellectual, as opposed to superficial and ignorant form. Amis then seeks to define the actual concept of anti-semitism, before Hitchens considers the perception of Jews as masters of finance

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Christopher reads from Hitch-22: A Memoir