The great dissent: how Oliver Wendell Holmes changed his mind--and changed the history of free speech in America

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Pub. Date:
2013.
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No right seems more fundamental to American public life than freedom of speech. Yet well into the twentieth century, that freedom was still an unfulfilled promise, with Americans regularly imprisoned merely for speaking out against government policies. Indeed, free speech as we know it comes less from the First Amendment than from a most unexpected source: Supreme Court justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. A lifelong skeptic, he disdained all individual rights, including the right to express one's political views. But in 1919, it was Holmes who wrote a dissenting opinion that would become the canonical affirmation of free speech in the United States. Why did Holmes change his mind? That question has puzzled historians for almost a century. Now, with the aid of newly discovered letters and confidential memos, law professor Thomas Healy reconstructs in vivid detail Holmes's journey from free-speech opponent to First Amendment hero. It is the story of a remarkable behind-the-scenes campaign by a group of progressives to bring a legal icon around to their way of thinking-and a deeply touching human narrative of an old man saved from loneliness and despair by a few unlikely young friends. Beautifully written and exhaustively researched, The Great Dissent is intellectual history at its best, revealing how free debate can alter the life of a man and the legal landscape of an entire nation.
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ISBN:
9780805094565
9781452696164
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Grouped Work ID fd59944b-c6e0-7ce8-9842-7c739dedc1e5
Grouping Title great dissent how oliver wendell holmes changed his mind and changed the history of free speech in a
Grouping Author healy thomas
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2019-08-14 20:02:02PM
Last Indexed 2019-08-20 02:41:55AM

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auth_author2 Campbell, Danny.
author Healy, Thomas,
author2-role Campbell, Danny.
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available_at_catalog Wright Farms
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display_description No right seems more fundamental to American public life than freedom of speech. Yet well into the twentieth century, that freedom was still an unfulfilled promise, with Americans regularly imprisoned merely for speaking out against government policies. Indeed, free speech as we know it comes less from the First Amendment than from a most unexpected source: Supreme Court justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. A lifelong skeptic, he disdained all individual rights, including the right to express one's political views. But in 1919, it was Holmes who wrote a dissenting opinion that would become the canonical affirmation of free speech in the United States. Why did Holmes change his mind? That question has puzzled historians for almost a century. Now, with the aid of newly discovered letters and confidential memos, law professor Thomas Healy reconstructs in vivid detail Holmes's journey from free-speech opponent to First Amendment hero. It is the story of a remarkable behind-the-scenes campaign by a group of progressives to bring a legal icon around to their way of thinking-and a deeply touching human narrative of an old man saved from loneliness and despair by a few unlikely young friends. Beautifully written and exhaustively researched, The Great Dissent is intellectual history at its best, revealing how free debate can alter the life of a man and the legal landscape of an entire nation.
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publishDate 2013
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Bib IdFormatFormat CategoryEditionLanguagePublisherPublication DatePhysical Description
ils:936371 Book Books First Edition. English Henry Holt and Company, 2013. 322 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
hoopla:MWT11019356 eAudiobook Audio Books Unabridged. English Tantor Audio , 2013. 1 online resource (1 audio file (10hr., 21 min.)) : digital.
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subject_facet Abrams, J., -- 1886-1953 -- Trials, litigation, etc
BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Lawyers & Judges
Freedom of speech -- United States
HISTORY / United States / 20th Century
Holmes, Oliver Wendell, -- Jr., -- 1841-1935
LAW / Courts
Trials (Anarchy) -- New York (State) -- New York -- History -- 20th Century
Trials (Anarchy) -- New York (State) -- New York -- History -- 20th century
title_display The great dissent : how Oliver Wendell Holmes changed his mind and changed the history of free speech in America
title_full The great dissent : how Oliver Wendell Holmes changed his mind and changed the history of free speech in America / Thomas Healy
The great dissent : how Oliver Wendell Holmes changed his mind--and changed the history of free speech in America [electronic resource] / Thomas Healy
title_short The great dissent :
title_sub how Oliver Wendell Holmes changed his mind--and changed the history of free speech in America
topic_facet Abrams, J
Freedom of speech
History
Holmes, Oliver Wendell
LAW / Courts
Trials (Anarchy)
Trials, litigation, etc