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Jakarta Post

Respecting academic freedom

  • Said Irandoust and Sandro Calvani

Khlong Luang, Thailand   /   Thu, January 10 2013   /  01:52 pm

Freedom and liberty are hallowed concepts which have been the bedrock of civilization for centuries. Martyrs for the cause of freedom have always upheld the principles and willingly suffered great hardships to keep the torch of civilization burning.

Recent events, particularly the video of a movie on Prophet Muhammad has brought the issue into focus once again. A number of questions have been raised by individuals and organizations alike. Where does the right of freedom of speech begin, and where does it end?

Is freedom of speech an absolute right unfettered by any restrictions? Should freedom be circumscribed by regulations?

Can the freedom of speech of one individual clash with the rights of another individual? Also, among conflicting individuals and groups, does one individual have greater freedom than another?

For people working in academe, freedom of ex...