First Amendment essay series

The website for the scholarly journal Journalism History seeks essays placing concepts related to First Amendment rights, particularly free speech and free press, in historical context. One installment in the First Amendment essay series will be posted on the Journalism History website each month throughout the year 2019.

The impetus for this essay series is the 100th anniversary of multiple famous Supreme Court cases that shaped legal thought on free expression. Though essays may examine First Amendment rights from a legal standpoint, including discussion of 1919 landmark cases, any and all topics exploring free expression throughout history are welcome. Topics related to minority rights are particularly encouraged. Essayists also may discuss current free expression concerns through an historical lens.

Completed essays will be 1,000-1,500 words, including citations. Authors should cite primary and/or secondary sources to support their arguments. Any citation style is acceptable.

Essays should not have been published elsewhere.

Each essay will be due on the first day of the month in which the essay is scheduled to be posted. The schedule for publication will be decided by Dec. 15.

To be considered for inclusion in the First Amendment essay series, please submit the following to by 11:59 p.m. Pacific time on Nov. 30, 2018:

  • A brief CV (including publications)
  • A brief synopsis of the topic you plan to discuss in your essay (no more than 100 words)
  • The preferred month of publication (if any)

Questions may be directed to Erika Pribanic-Smith, online content coordinator for Journalism History, at

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