Can saying something make it so? The nature of seditious harm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

In this paper, I redress an analytic deficit in debates about sedition by providing an explanatorily account of the relation between speech and action using speech act theory as developed by J. L. Austin. The specific focus will be on speech acts advocating violence against the state, in the form of religious sermons preaching violent jihad or glorifying acts of terrorism. This philosophical account will have legal consequences for how we classify speech acts deemed to be dangerous, or to cause harm. It also suggests that because speech can constitute action or conduct in certain circumstances, sedition laws, in principle, might be defensible, but not in their current form.

LanguageEnglish
Pages273-305
Number of pages33
JournalLaw and Philosophy
Volume29
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2010
Externally publishedYes

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speech act
sermon
terrorism
deficit
violence
cause
Law
Speech Acts
Sedition
Harm
Terrorism
Sermons
Preaching
Causes
Religion
J. L. Austin
Speech Act Theory
Jihad

Cite this

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Can saying something make it so? The nature of seditious harm. / Sorial, Sarah.

In: Law and Philosophy, Vol. 29, No. 3, 05.2010, p. 273-305.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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