Glenn LouryFeb. 8, 2021, 6 p.m. Online only. Free and open to the public. Registration required. Part of the Benson Center's 2020-21 "The Canceled" lecture series.

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About the Webinar:

Perhaps more insidious than the outright prohibition of expressing contrary opinions are the myriad ways in which, fearing social disapprobation, we elect to censor ourselves. Drawing on classical and contemporary texts, this lecture explores the logic of tacitly coerced conformity, and applies that logic to a number of currently relevant cases.

About the Speaker:

Glenn C. Loury is Merton P. Stoltz Professor of Economics at Brown University. He holds the BA in Mathematics (Northwestern) and the PhD in Economics (M.I.T). As an economic theorist he has published widely and lectured throughout the world on his research.  He is also among America’s leading critics writing on racial inequality. He has been elected as a Distinguished Fellow of the American Economics Association, as a Member of the American Philosophical Society and of the U.S. Council on Foreign Relations, and as a Fellow of the Econometric Society and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. 

About the Series

In recent months, social coercion has become a more effective means of restricting political speech than legal coercion. Opinions that were once common are now anathema, and campaigns to de-platform or even “cancel” proponents of these opinions are increasingly frequent. These attempts at "cancellation" are not merely fair-minded criticism. Rather, they involve efforts to punish those with heterodox views by banishing them from social media, pressuring their employers to fire them, harassing them in public, or threatening their families. These new methods of social coercion have curtailed the range political views that can be expressed publicly without fear of social sanction. This series considers the implications of the new cancel culture, the norms it imposes on thought and expression, and the conformism it attempts to compel.