Accessible Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter September 2, 2015

The Legal Logic of the Master-Signifier in Pseudo-Freedom of Expression: A Self-Guarantee for the Reformist Modes of Self-Expression in Islamic Republic of Iran

M. Y. and R. A.

Abstract

Appearing in the “Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam” as an undefined referent for the limits on freedom of expression in Islam, Shariah is still to be chased as an indefinable referent which restricts freedom of the expression in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Iran’s Press Law as well as Constitution unveil Shariah’s referent to be a person: the Jurist-Ruler (Vali-ye Faqih) around whom a cult of personality is legalized in terms of “Imamate” and around whom all the limits on freedom of expression revolve (e.g. recent suspension of Bahar Newspaper). Interpretation (ijtehad) of Shariah is not a solution but part of the problem in Iran. Such problem can be dealt in terms of three modes of self-expression which were invented by the Iranian Reformists to avoid self-censorship. The notion of master-signifier can be the key to unraveling the problem of self-referentiality in freedom of expression and its Reformist solution in Iran’s legal system.

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Published Online: 2015-9-2
Published in Print: 2015-6-1

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