Title

Theorizing the First Amendment: From Roger Williams to Larry Flynt

Abstract

This chapter argues that the theoretical core of the First Amendment can be found in the concept of disestablishment, and that the meaning of disestablishment can be, and has been, extended from the religious sphere to the secular. It explores the historical development of rights of conscience and dissent, and the application of those rights to various changing historical circumstances, such as the development of political parties and the struggle over slavery. It then turns to an application of this analysis to several contemporary First Amendment controversies, including campaign finance and sexual expression.

Publisher

Jai Press

Publication Date

1-1-2011

Publication Title

Studies In Law, Politics, And Society

Department

Politics

Document Type

Article

DOI

10.1108/S1059-4337(2010)0000053007

Language

English

Format

text

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