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Sedition and Domestic Terrorism - The Early English Experience, The American Colonial Experience, Adoption Of The First Amendment, The Sedition Act

libel seditious criminal treason

The crime of sedition consists in any attempt short of treason to excite hostility against the sovereign. Most commonly, the crime takes the form of expression, and in such form it is known as seditious libel. Because the substantive contours of seditious libel have shifted over time, there is no simple definition of the doctrine. In its most expansive form, however, seditious libel may be said to embrace any criticism—true or false—of the form, constitution, policies, laws, officers, symbols, or conduct of government. Prosecutions for seditious libel have routinely been used on both sides of the Atlantic to suppress opposition to the dominant political order.

GEOFFREY R. STONE

DAN M. KAHAN

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