Aporias of courage and the freedom of expression
In this article we will suggest that the traditional account of the freedom of expression needs revision. The emergence of Internet media has shown that the traditional ideal of a plurality of voices does not in itself lead to fruitful public spheres. Inspired by Foucault’s interpretation of the Greek concept parrhesia we suggest that the plurality of voices should be supplemented with an ideal of courageous truth-telling. We will furthermore argue that the notion of courage has two dimensions that should be taken into account. On the one hand a Derridean reading of courage brings out a disruptive and aporetic feature of courage. On the other hand, courage also needs to be articulated through some kind of goal, which in a public setting calls for a deliberative dimension. We conclude by suggesting that public spheres with courageous truth-telling will facilitate societies in which strong voices and opinions are continuously challenged by less strong voices.