Category : religion and culture

Royal Albert Hall and Latvian music festival drawn into Russian culture war

At first glance, Latvia’s New Wave music festival and the iconic London concert hall might seem to have little in common. But both have recently been embroiled in the fallout from the crisis in Ukraine, James Montague reports

Turkey: Artists engaged in Kurdish rights struggle face limits on free expression

A companion report: Developments in cultural policy and its effects on freedom of the arts, Ankara As we have shown in previous publications, artists engaged in the Kurdish rights struggle are differentially affected by limitations to freedom of expression in general and in the arts in particular. This is even more the case in the […]

Cultural policy effects on freedom of the arts in Turkey

A companion report: Freedom of expression in the arts and censorship in Kurdish Region, Diyarbakir, Batman In the course of its research Siyah Bant has conceptualized censorship not just as the banning of artistic expression through legal means but included process of delegitimization, threats, pressure, targeting and hate speech directed at artists and arts institutions […]

Pakistan’s religious kidnappings: Forced conversions and marriages

An increase in kidnappings of Hindu girls who are then coerced to embrace Islam and forced to marry has raised concerns in Pakistan, Zofeen Ebrahim writes

A conversation with Meltem Arikan, Turkish playwright and author

In the days after the Gezi Park protests, Turkish playwright and author Meltem Arikan found herself at the centre of a government-led hate campaign that left her fearing for her life.

Belarus: Cultural censorship as state policy

Keeping tight control over every sphere of social life is the general policy of the Belarusian authorities. This is true not only about politics, economy or media; arts and culture face censorship as well. Zmitser Yanenka reports from Belarus

Targeting of Ahmadis continues in Pakistan

Police in Lahore stopped an Ahmadi man from performing a ritual sacrifice because Pakistan does not recognise the community as Muslim, Zofeen Ebrahim writes

Egyptian activists battle ‘epidemic’ of sexual harassment and violence

Sexual harassment has been widespread in Egypt for decades but since the January 2011 uprising that toppled former President Hosni Mubarak, the problem has taken on epic proportions becoming what rights activists now describe as "an epidemic". Shahira Amin reports

Germany: A positive environment for free expression clouded by surveillance

The situation with regards to freedom of expression in Germany is largely positive, but there are questions over internal mass surveillance.

France: Strict defamation and privacy laws limit free expression

Freedom of expression is generally protected in France, although is limited by strict defamation and privacy laws. Several laws have passed since 1972 that have further restricted this fundamental right.

Italy’s free expression hamstrung by lack of media plurality

The situation for freedom of expression in Italy is curtailed by a lack of media plurality, restrictive media legislation and a digital sphere restricted by a strict privacy law.

Should religious or cultural sensibilities ever limit free expression?

From the Magazine: Writer and broadcaster Kenan Malik and art historian and educator Nada Shabout on one of the art world's most contentious debates