The Supreme Court has emphasized that expressive liberties require 'breathing space' in which to thrive. At a minimum, speakers need places in which to assemble, speak, and petition government. This book is a comprehensive examination of First Amendment rights in public places. It shows that the literal ground beneath speakers' feet has been steadily eroding, from personal spaces to college campuses and to once vast and important inscribed places, such as public parks and public squares. Through the study of 'expressive topography', this book considers a variety of contemporary speech contests including restrictions on abortion clinic sidewalk counselors, protests at military funerals, and restrictions on assembly and speech at political conventions. Countering or reversing these forces will require a focused and sustained effort by public officials, courts, and, of course, the people themselves.
• Cross-disciplinary appeal using geographic and sociological frames to study First Amendment issues • Combines academic concepts from law with contemporary free speech debates • First and only holistic account of public speech rights in the U.S.
1. Introduction: the geography of expression; 2. The expressive topography and public liberties; 3. Embodied places; 4. Contested places; 5. Non-places; 6. Inscribed places; 7. Militarized places; 8. Places of higher learning; 9. Networked public places.