Salman Rushdie, The Satanic Verses, cover page of illegal Iranian edition, undated, in a translation by ‘Roshanak Irani’ (pseudonym). Image credit: Olaf Simons, via Wikimedia Commons

Tantum religio potuit suadere malorum – ‘So great are the evils that religion can incite’ (Lucretius, first century BC).

The Freethinker condemns yesterday’s attack on Salman Rushdie, which was terrible though not, alas, unexpected. We will be reflecting further on the attack and the relationship between religion and free speech in the coming week.

In some respects, nearly every article published by the Freethinker has some bearing on the ideas of free expression, free thought and their relationship. Below we have compiled a bibliography of some of the most relevant:

(This article was first published on 13 August 2022. Since then, the below list has been updated on a rolling basis as articles have become available.)


Milton’s ‘Areopagitica’: liberty and licensing, by Tony Howe

Image of the week: Redacted, by Paul Fitzgerald

The return of blasphemy in Ireland, by Noel Yaxley

British Islam and the crisis of ‘wokeism’ in universities – interview with Steven Greer

Cancel culture and religious intolerance: ‘Falsely Accused of Islamophobia’, by Steven Greer, reviewed by Daniel Sharp

Free speech at universities: where do we go from here? – by Julius Weinberg

Blasphemy and bishops: how secularists are navigating the culture wars, editorial

The perils of dropping a book, by Noel Yaxley

Freethought and secularism, by Bob Forder


Freethought in the 21st century – by Christoph De Spiegeleer and Emma Park

Silence of the teachers, by a secondary school teacher

Jackboots in Manchester 暴政踐踏之下的曼徹斯特 – by Simon Cheng

Secularism and the Struggle for Free Speech, by Stephen Evans

Free speech in Britain: a losing battle? from our Faith Watch series

The price of criticising Islam in northern Nigeria: imprisonment or death, by Emma Park

Mubarak Bala: update on a ‘blasphemer’ in Nigeria, by Emma Park

Cartoon: Jesus and Mo on civil rights, by Mohammed Jones

‘The best way to combat bad speech is with good speech’ – interview with Maryam Namazie

The radicalisation of young Muslims in the UK: an ongoing problem? by Khadija Khan

Religion and the decline of freethought in South Asia, by Kunwar Khuldune Shahid

Blasphemy Month at the Freethinker, editorial

Britain’s blasphemy heritage, by David Nash

On trial for blasphemy: the Freethinker’s first editor and offensive cartoons, by Bob Forder

From the archive: imprisoned for blasphemy

And finally: Cannibal Speaks Out, by Modus Tollens

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