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The First Amendment and You: What Everyone Should Know  By  cover art

The First Amendment and You: What Everyone Should Know

By: John E. Finn, The Great Courses
Narrated by: John E. Finn
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Publisher's summary

A mere 45 words, the First Amendment to the Constitution stands as a pillar of our democracy and has had an incalculable influence on the development of human freedom in the United States and the Western world. To study the First Amendment is to learn something about the meaning of America and who "We the People" are - and to see the significant and far-reaching cultural implications of this fundamental constitutional provisions.These twelve practical lectures offer a guide to understanding the protections and limitations implied by the First Amendment.

You'll learn what and whom it protects, and why it matters to you personally. You'll consider questions of how we define speech, the meaning of "religion," and when the state can interfere with your rights.

You'll also explore the questions courts and citizens will be grappling with for years to come: How does the First Amendment apply to the Internet? Does the First Amendment apply to video games? Should new communication technologies make courts reconsider well-settled rules? Is social media subject to existing principles, to new ones, or to none at all?

Throughout these lectures, Professor Finn returns to a fundamental theme: What the First Amendment protects is largely a function of why it protects it-the why being America's commitment to democracy and liberty. In pursuit of these ideals, courts have often placed a higher value on political speech, although no such distinction is made in the Constitution. You'll examine numerous landmark Supreme Court decisions, including Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2012 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2012 The Great Courses