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Fighting Faiths:
The Abrams Case, The Supreme Court, and Free Speech (Cornell Paperbacks)

by Richard Polenberg

ISBN 0801486181 / 9780801486180 / 0-8014-8618-1
Publisher Cornell University Press
Language English
Edition Softcover
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Book summary

Jacob Abrams et al. v. United States is the landmark Supreme Court case in the definition of free speech. Although the 1918 conviction of four Russian Jewish anarchistsfor distributing leaflets protesting America's intervention in the Russian revolutionwas upheld, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes's dissenting opinion (with Justice Louis Brandeis) concerning "clear and present danger" has proved the touchstone of almost all subsequent First Amendment theory and litigation.In Fighting Faiths, Richard Polenberg explores the causes and characters of this dramatic episode in American history. He traces the Jewish immigrant experience, the lives of the convicted anarchists before and after the trials, the careers of the major players in the court casesmen such as Holmes, defense attorney Harry Weinberger, Southern Judge Henry DeLamar Clayton, Jr., and the young J. Edgar Hooverand the effects of this important case on present-day First Amendment rights. [via]