“Cartoons, Comics and Human Rights after the Charlie-Hebdo Massacre” 19 January, 12.30 in the CACSSS Seminar Room

16 Jan 2015
“Cartoons, Comics and Human Rights after the Charlie-Hebdo Massacre”

"Cartoons, Comics and Human Rights after the Charlie-Hebdo Massacre" by Dr. David Keane, Senior Lecturer, School of Law, Middlesex University.    Monday 19th January 2015 at 12.30 in the CACSSS Seminar Room, Ground Floor, O'Rahilly Building, UCC.

Chair/Discussant:  Dr. Patrick Crowley, Department of French


Abstract: The recent attacks in Paris on Charlie-Hebdo have reignited discussions around the meaning of cartoons and freedom of expression. This paper will look at the history of cartoon satire, invoking past examples of racial and religious discrimination in cartoons while emphasizing the important role cartoonists have played in criticizing and checking the exercise of power. It will also examine the legal meaning of freedom of expression, which despite popular belief to the contrary has never been absolute in France or elsewhere in Europe.



Dr David Keane is Senior Lecturer in Law at Middlesex University, London. He is a graduate of U.C.C. (BCL Law and French) and of NUI Galway. His book Caste-based Discrimination in International Human Rights Law (Ashgate, 2007) won the Hart book prize for early career academics and has been widely cited, including by the UK Supreme Court. He has written a number of journal articles around freedom of expression including analysis of the cartoon debates in the Human Rights Quarterly, and has recently co-authored a chapter on human rights reporting in comic book format for the first collection on law and comics (Giddens (ed.), Graphic Justice, Routledge 2015). See also: D Keane ‘ Cartoon Violence and Freedom of Expression’  Human Rights Quarterly , Volume 30, Number 4, November 2008


For further information, please contact


Centre for Criminal Justice and Human Rights (School of Law, UCC) and

Department of French (School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures, UCC)

School of Languages, Literatures & Cultures

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