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Speech MattersOn Lying, Morality, and the Law$
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Seana Valentine Shiffrin

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780691157023

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691157023.001.0001

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Sincerity and Institutional Values

Sincerity and Institutional Values

(p.182) Chapter Six Sincerity and Institutional Values
Speech Matters

Seana Valentine Shiffrin

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines freedom of speech and sincerity in relation to institutions and institutional roles, using the university as a prime example. It first challenges the idea that mere declarations that one is suspending the context of truthfulness are sufficient to justify doing so, and illustrates the defects of this idea through a discussion of the doctrine of puffery in contract law. It then makes the case that an institution's epistemic ends may preclude lies in their service by citing the example of the police. It also explores the concept of academic freedom and misrepresentations in the university, focusing on the issue of lying to research subjects. The chapter argues that universities have distinctive epistemic goals that in turn provide an independent basis for academic freedom, as well as a special source of criticism of the use of misrepresentation as a tool of academic research.

Keywords:   freedom of speech, sincerity, institutions, puffery, lying, academic freedom, misrepresentation, universities, academic research, research subjects

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