Dean of the Faculty

Statement of Freedom of Expression and Dissent

Amherst College prizes and defends freedom of speech and dissent. It affirms the right of teachers and students to teach and learn, free from coercive force and intimidation and subject only to the constraints of reasoned discourse and peaceful conduct. It also recognizes that such freedoms and rights entail responsibility for one's actions. Thus the College assures and protects the rights of its members to express their views so long as there is neither use nor threat of force nor interference with the rights of others to express their views. The College considers disruption of classes (whether, for example, by the abridgment of free expression in a class or by obstructing access to the place in which the class normally meets) or of other academic activity to be a serious offense that damages the integrity of an academic institution.