Ryan J. Suto's Blog

17 January 2013

Standards of Expression in Transitional Societies: Incitement in Kosovo

This paper on differing models of free expression and their relation to transitional and post-conflict societies can be found here.


This paper argues that standards of incitement should adhere to a more restrictive model of free expression in transitional societies and a less restrictive model of free expression in mature societies. The several international agreements which involve standards of hate speech and incitement regulations envision a singular standard by which all societies should be held. The view which is dominant in international law will be referred to as the International Model; the alternative view, the Libertarian Model, advocates for greater individual freedom with respect to incitement, hate speech and governmental restrictions on speech. At present there exists an assumption that these views are wholly separate legal understandings and do not operate in concert.

Next, the paper selects a particular case, Kosovo, to elucidate the nature of free expression in transitional societies. The time immediately after the recent 1999 Kosovo War and Kosovo today will be discussed. Kosovo presents a case where the repressive pre-war Milosevic-controlled media environment has been succeeded by a restrictive media regime imposed by international organization in the name of peace and security.

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