Locke and Hate Speech Law

A Critical Review

  • J. K. Numao
Keywords: John Locke


Hate speech is a high profile issue in many liberal democracies today. While commentaries by constitutional experts and jurists abound in the press, and by legal and political philosophers in academia, it is remarkable that there is far less contribution from students of history of political thought and intellectual history, especially of the early modern era, considering how largely the theme of religious toleration and intolerance featured in this period. Jeremy Waldron’s The Harm in Hate Speech, and more specifically Chapter 8 entitled ‘Toleration and Calumny’, helps to break this silence, making a case for how Enlightenment toleration theories from Locke to Voltaire might connect and enrich our discussions about hate speech today.

How to Cite
Numao, J. K. 2018. “Locke and Hate Speech Law”. Locke Studies 17 (February), 173-96. https://doi.org/10.5206/ls.2017.882.