less than 1 minute read


Political Subversion

Because his pupils were closely allied to the oligarchy, it is arguable that the real reason for the persecution of Socrates was his political stance. Plato's Laws (c. 350 B.C.E.) makes the case for wide powers of censorship in order to prevent innovation: If no new songs and books are allowed and few people are allowed to travel, there will be no new ideas and no pressure for harmful political change.

In the Roman Empire, censorship of writers was often provoked by political satires of the emperors. In later times, political authorities have often censored expressions that they perceived to be threatening to their power and social stability, even claiming that any opposition to their persons or policies is treason.

Additional topics

Science EncyclopediaScience & Philosophy: Categorical judgement to ChimaeraCensorship - Blasphemy, Heresy, And Atheism, Political Subversion, The Netherlands And England, From Bayle To Constant