Gr 7 Up-- A simple, contemporary overview of the applications of the First Amendment through history. Using court cases as current as a still-undecided cross-burning incident in Minnesota to a case from 1735, Pascoe outlines the different ways in which the First Amendment has been employed. In clear, relatively easy-to-understand terms, the topic is delineated in short, to-the-point chapters. A brief history of the concept in the ancient world to its inclusion in the Bill of Rights precedes the chapter profiles of First Amendment applications that include political speech, ``fighting words,'' and symbolic expression (inflammatory speech, flag burning, etc.), the press and national security, libel, obscenity and commercials, and censorship and freedom of expression in education. Cases cited are well explained and pertinent to the subject. An excellent source for reports and research papers, this is much more current and accessible than Hentoff's The First Freedom (Delacorte, 1980). Court decisions cited are listed in the notes, but the appendix for further reading includes only books. Organizations to contact for further information are listed. An excellent, unbiased source for reports, this will come in handy at term paper time. --Kathryn Havris, Mesa Public Library, AZ
After looking at the First Amendment's roots in earlier societies, Pascoe presents many examples of those American events that almost cry out for censorship, including flag burning, Nazi marches, and "hate speech." She presents the debate about these issues and others very concisely--maybe too concisely. However, her account is a good starting point for students wanting information about freedom of expression. Photographs, which were not available at the time of review, will be included. Chapter notes and a list of books and organizations for further information are appended.