John Steel

Examining the relationship between free speech and freedom of the press

Free speech and freedom of the press are often conflated ideas, with the latter, in particular, lacking a clear conceptual and historical framing. In his recently published book Journalism and free speech (Routledge), John Steel examines the historical and philosophical relationship between journalism, free speech and freedom of the press in light of contemporary debates and problems related to media freedom, regulation and censorship. Here he outlines his motivations for writing the book and its main arguments.



  1. Lichtenberg, J. (1987) The foundations and limits of freedom of the press, Philosophy and Public Affairs, Vol. 16, No. 4 pp 329-355
  2. Mill, J. S. (1991 [1859]) On liberty, Oxford, Oxford University Press
  3. Neiman, S. (2009) Moral clarity, London, the Bodley Head

Note on the contributor

Dr. John Steel is a Lecturer in the Department of Journalism Studies at the University of Sheffield. He has published in the areas of media historiography, popular journalism, technology and journalism and journalism education. Contact details: Department of Journalism Studies, University of Sheffield, 18-22 Regent Street, Sheffield S1 3NJ. E-mail: