Silencing the Opposition

How the U.S. Government Suppressed Freedom of Expression During Major Crises, Second Edition

Edited by Craig R. Smith

Subjects: American History, Public Policy, History, American Government, Political Science
Paperback : 9781438435206, 368 pages, January 2011
Hardcover : 9781438435190, 368 pages, January 2011

Alternative formats available from:

Table of contents

Preface and Introduction
Craig R. Smith

1. The Alien and Sedition Crisis
Craig R. Smith

2. Lincoln and Habeas Corpus
Craig R. Smith and Stephanie M. Hurst

3. The Radical Republicans
Craig R. Smith

4. Suppression of Native American Culture
Craig R. Smith, Karen Rasmussen, and Stephanie M. Hurst

5. Silencing the Union Movement
Andrew Sachs

6. Suppression of the Suffrage Movement
Katie L. Gibson and Amy L. Heyse

7. The Red Scares
Craig R. Smith

8. Suppression During the Vietnam Era
Sharon Downey and Karen Rasmussen

9. Suppressing Political Speech Through Broadcast Regulation and Campaign Reform
Craig R. Smith

10. 9/11 and the Ensuing Restrictions on Civil Liberties
Craig R. Smith and R. Brandon Anderson

11. Conclusion
Craig R. Smith

List of Contributors

Examines major challenges to the Fist Amendment and focuses on the extremely important paradigm shift of freedom of expression in the post-9/11 era.


The first edition of Silencing the Opposition examined major challenges to the First Amendment using illustrative case studies of the various forms of governmental suppression in our history. The essays showed that governmental forces have used rhetorical strategies in simple and sophisticated ways to silence opponents. By studying which strategies are effective, how they evolve, and how they are unmasked, the authors offered a better understanding to combat the strategies in the future. This second edition of Silencing the Opposition includes: a revised introduction and conclusion, updated chapters, and two new chapters, one on the Patriot Act and one on habeas corpus of 'enemy combatants. ' In these revisions and additions, Smith has arranged a valuable, timely collection appropriate for its focus on the last eight years of civil liberty reforms in the United States.

Craig R. Smith is Professor of Communication Studies at California State University, Long Beach, where he also directs the Center for First Amendment Studies. He has written many books, including The Four Freedoms of the First Amendment; Rhetoric and Human Consciousness: A History; and Daniel Webster and the Oratory of Civil Religion. He regularly publishes editorials on the subject of freedom of expression in such prestigious newspapers as the Miami Herald, Los Angeles Times, and Washington Post.


"Useful for understanding the context of contemporary government policies. " — CHOICE