From Index on Censorship magazine: See no evil


The latest issue of Index on Censorship magazine carries this compelling interview with Jytte Klausen. She is a Danish academic at Brandeis University in the United States and the author of the first scholarly account of the Danish cartoons crisis. The interview focused on the decision by her publisher, Yale University Press, not to publish images of the cartoons themselves in her book.

Index on Censorship did not publish the cartoons during the original controversy four years ago. Should we do so this time? I believed it was my responsibility to refer the matter to the board of trustees. In any charity, it is the board that bears fiduciary and legal responsibility and has a duty of care to staff, and stakeholders, such as publishers and printers.

The board met on 27 October. After a detailed discussion, it decided reluctantly to recommend that the images not be published. One member of the board, Kenan Malik, who was unable to attend the board meeting, subsequently took issue with the decision. In response, and in keeping with Index’s commitment to free expression, the chairman, Jonathan Dimbleby, and other trustees agreed to publish the reasons for their decision, and to publish Malik’s dissenting view alongside.

John Kampfner, chief executive

Read Index chair Jonathan Dimbleby on the decision not to publish the cartoons here

Read Index board member Kenan Malik’s view of the decision here

See No Evil

Jytte Klausen talks to Index on Censorship about her new book on the Danish cartoons crisis and discusses why it was published without any illustrations