This book explores the relationship between truth and freedom in the free press. It argues that the relationship is problematic because the free press implies a competition between plural ideas, whereas truth is univocal. Based on this tension the book claims that the idea of a free press is premised on an epistemological illusion. This illusion enables society to maintain that the world it perceives through the press corresponds to the world as it actually exists, explaining why defenders of the free press continue to rely on its capacity to discover the truth, despite economic conditions and technological innovations undermining much of its independence. The book invites the reader to reconsider the philosophical foundations, constitutional justifications, and structure and functions of the free press, and whether the institution can, in fact, realise both freedom and truth. It will be of great interest to anyone concerned in the role and value of the free press in the modern world.
Dr John Charney (Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Valparaiso Chile)
Country of Publication:
28 May 2020
1. Free Press: Necessary Illusions I. Introduction II. The Critique of the Political Economy of the Press III. Technological Progress and the Construction of Social Reality IV. Re-thinking the Illusion of the Free Press 2. The Classic Theory and the Quest for Truth I. Introduction II. John Milton: The Origins of the Theory III. The Struggle for the Freedom of the Press IV. John Stuart Mill and the Theory of Truth V. Conclusions 3. Truth and Politics: Democratic Justifications of a Free Press I. Introduction II. Politics and Truth III. Holmes and the Marketplace of Ideas IV. Truth and Politics: Alexander Meiklejohn and the Critique of the Marketplace of Ideas V. Robert Post's Participatory Democracy: Politics without Truth VI. Free Press and the Politics of Truth VII. Conclusions 4. Freedom of Speech and Autonomy: Towards the Discovery of the True Self I. Introduction II. Early Techniques of Self-discovery III. Personal Autonomy and Freedom of Speech IV. Autonomy and Authenticity: Back to the True Self V. The Free Press and Self-discovery 5. Freedom and Truth I. Introduction II. Truth, Freedom and the Political III. Freedom as Non-Interference: Origins and Consolidation of Market Domination IV. Domination and the Truth-seeking Purpose of the Press V. Re-thinking the Relationship between Truth and Freedom Conclusion
John Charney is Associate Professor of Constitutional Law at Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Valparaiso.
Reviews for The Illusion of the Free Press
An interesting contribution to the ongoing discussion about the meaning of free speech, press freedom and the freedom of politics in general. (Translated from the original Spanish) -- Pablo Marshall, Universidad Austral de Chile * Derecho y Critica Social *