Free Speech: An Ascetic Philosophical Analysis

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The availability of public spaces is crucial in allowing a fluent human interaction. Citizens in a democratic nation need places to assemble in order to speak and interact. However, although spaces are so essential, not much studies have been made on how the architecture of spaces influence the human interaction. In fact, political philosophy and urban planning have always been analyzed as two different topics. Most of the blame should be put on the philosophical intelligential who has always worked in isolation in comparison to the urbanistic counterpart. Among the multitude of human activities, free speech is the one who most requires free public spaces to be performed. Is true that ascetic philosophical analysis has created a great amount…show more content…
Above all, spaces of all kinds and nature are essential for the execution of the right of free speech. The absence of free spaces and intelligently planned common areas where individuals can express themselves freely in front of other individuals that can hear and gather around the speaker, is an enormous obstacle to free speech. Therefore, a constitutional right is meaningless if there is no place to exercise its purpose. This paper will focus on the importance of the interrelation of free speech and the availability of free spaces. It will start the narration by talking about the first urban planner that started to intertwine the fields of political philosophy and urban planning in ancient Greece, and then lead the analysis in the mutation of spaces from the agora to the fragmentation of free spaces. It is important to highlight that this analysis considers free speech as a process that has no absolute expression or form. In other world, speech will not be considered in its highest platonic form, but rather in in a more pragmatic and social way where the main purpose is communicating something valuable to…show more content…
Scholar and essayist Claudio Magris, says, “The town piazza is synonymous with encounters. dialogue, liberalism, and democracy” (7). Italian people can meet freely in the piazza and speak as individual in front of the crowd. Nonetheless, in order to contribute to the discussion, some social norms must be accepted before entering into the pizza. In fact, this space is seen by all Italians as a place where most unorthodox and eccentric behavior are accepted. The free expression is correlated by physical gestures and an accentuated behavior that can be socially performed in the piazza. At the same time, speaking in public entails understanding the social norms and manners of the society, which can provoke self-censorship. On the one hand, the society imposes to the speaker a sort of norms and standard that have to be matched by the speaker in order to respect the public morale. On the other hand, as Magris says, “the piazza is the liberal space par excellence,” so the society allows to the individual its maximum expression (7). Although, a broad discussion can be opened on the idea of self-censorship and free speech, and to what extend a person that censor him or herself can be seen as free, some principles must be taken into consideration. Fist, as said in the introduction this paper is not a discussion on the platonic form of free
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