Suzanne Nossel, chief executive officer of PEN America, the writers’ human rights organization devoted to defending free expression worldwide, will present a virtual Jewish Book Council author talk. The event, hosted by Falmouth Jewish Congregation and the Worcester JCC, will feature bestselling author and journalist Larry Tye in conversation with Nossel, author of “Dare to Speak: Defending Free Speech for All” (HarperCollins, 2020).
In an era where one tweet can launch or end your career, where free speech is invoked with great passion but limited understanding, where the First Amendment can be mistaken as a smokescreen for hatred, learning to maneuver the rough and tumble terrain of public discourse has never been more urgent.
In “Dare to Speak,” leading free expression advocate Suzanne Nossel argues that we can and must uphold the rights of individuals to speak their minds, while also working assiduously to build a more equitable, inclusive public culture committed to dismantling racism and other forms of bigotry. Centered on 20 easy-to-grasp, practical principles, Nossel’s manifesto equips readers with essential tools to navigate today’s diverse, digitized and deeply divided society without curbing free expression. Her examples include incidents involving antisemitic and anti-Israel speech on campus and her presentation addresses how Jewish communities can reconcile their commitment to combat hatred and defamation with robust protections for free speech, and why they should. Nossel advises readers how to use language conscientiously, defend the right to express unpopular views and protest speech without silencing it, providing concrete guidance on how to reconcile these sometimes competing imperatives within universities, on social media and in daily life. Replete with insightful arguments, colorful examples and salient advice, “Dare to Speak” brings much-needed clarity to the raging debate over whether free speech can survive intact in the 21st century.
As CEO of PEN America, the leading human rights and free expression organization, Nossel is a leading voice on free expression issues in the United States and globally. Her prior career spanned government service and leadership roles in the corporate and nonprofit sectors. She has served as the chief operating officer of Human Rights Watch and as executive director of Amnesty International USA. During the first term of the Obama administration, Nossel served as deputy assistant secretary of state for international organizations, where she led U.S. engagement in the United Nations and multilateral institutions, on human rights and humanitarian issues. Nossel coined the term “Smart Power,” which was the title of a 2004 article she published in Foreign Affairs Magazine and later became the theme of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s tenure in office. Nossel is a magna cum laude graduate of both Harvard College and Harvard Law School.
Joining Nossel in conversation will be Larry Tye, a New York Times bestselling author of numerous books about American history and culture, including, most recently, biographies of Sen. Joe McCarthy and Robert F. Kennedy. In addition to his writing, Tye runs the Boston-based Health Coverage Fellowship, which helps the media do a better job reporting on critical issues like public health, mental health and high-tech medicine. From 1986 to 2001, Tye was an award-winning reporter at The Boston Globe, where his primary beat was medicine. He also served as the Globe’s environmental reporter, roving national writer, investigative reporter and sports writer.
The public is invited to view the live broadcast on FCTV Public Channel 13 in Falmouth. Zoom participation is available to members of Falmouth Jewish Congregation and its host partner, the Worcester JCC.+ More... - Less...
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