Journalism and the Politics of Hate: Charting Ethical Responses to Religious Intolerance

Cherian GEORGE*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


A series of international controversies involving religious offense have manifested the clash of values between freedom of expression and respect for religious identity. Such conflicts pose an ethical dilemma for media. Journalists need to assert freedom of expression, but they should also understand how hate speech can be used to repress targeted groups, and not turn into unwitting facilitators of such campaigns. They should also appreciate that the taking of offense, and not just the giving of it, can be engineered by leaders of religious communities to secure a political advantage. Journalists appear underprepared for handling such events. While not attempting a revision of current codes of ethics, this paper draws on legal discourse to suggest a framework and a language through which journalists can deliberate their ethics to respond to an urgent global challenge. Copyright Taylor & Francis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-90
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Media Ethics: Exploring Questions of Media Morality
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2014

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Communication
  • Philosophy


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