HistoryRemix: Learning Voice

I’m having a hard time shrugging off the hesitancy on the part of some students to exercise their voice outside of the safety of classroom walls. For some it may be no more than a difficulty in distinguishing between what situations constitute free speech…differentiating between the freedom to use profanity for recreational purposes and the freedom to express dissenting opinions in a respectful and thoughtful way. As a colleague pointed out, for some it may be a residual of living in a larger “culture of fear.” I think what worries me is the possibility that for some it might be a lack of ENCOURAGEMENT to exercise their voice…to hone the skills of discourse rather than parrot (or recite) the facts. Is this a consequence of the “easy information” of technology? Food for thought: a web conference held in 2007 on Digital Democracy and the Freedom of Speech at Temple University. The essential questions and topics for discussion are worth a look.

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