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Understanding the speech politics of the new campus activism.


Asking sensitivity from your peers - that is a manifestation of free expression. It's also a manifestation of free expression to be offensive. But inclusion and free speech aren't mutually exclusive. You need one to advance the other. The students who are protesting are using freedom of speech as a tool to advance inclusivity and diversity on campus, and university administrators are starting to get the point.

PEN America's Omar Safadi examines the tension between free speech and inclusivity on the American college campus, and explains why recent controversies around trigger warnings and safe spaces reveal the work of social change, and serve to amplify diverse voices and expand freedom of expression to more voices on campus.

Last month, PEN America released the investigative report And Campus for All: Diversity, Inclusion, and Free Speech at U.S. Universities.

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Omar Safadi

Omar Safadi is the Coordinator of Free Expression Programs for PEN America.


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