France: TV channel censors political message on rapper’s T-shirt in new video

In an act that sparked public outrage on social media, French TV channel W9 decided to blur out rapper Black M’s T-shirt when airing his new video for his song ‘Je Suis Chez Moi’ due to a political message referring to a controversial death under police custody, reported Le Parisien on 19 September 2016. The […]

France: Art installation defaced by Turkish MP assistant

A 1,000-photo-collage art installation at the Council of Europe (CoE) headquarters in Strasbourg, France, was defaced by the parliamentary assistant of a Turkish member of the Assembly when they sliced off the “edited and toned down” version of the infamous Danish Prophet Muhammad cartoon, reported The Malta Independent on 14 October 2016. Norbert Francis Attard, […]

France: Music festivals cancel Eagles of Death Metal performances

Music festival organisers in France have cancelled performances by the American band Eagles of Death Metal following controversial remarks by its frontman, reported various international news providers. The band’s Bataclan concert in Paris in November 2015 was attacked by terrorists, who shot and killed 89 people there. Eagles of Death Metal’s leadsinger Jesse Hughes had […]

France: Mayor cancels WWI centenary concert over rapper’s “anti-France” lyrics

Verdun city mayor Samuel Hazard cancelled French rapper Black M’s concert commemorating the 100-year anniversary of WWI’s Battle of Verdun due to protests fuelled by far-right website’s fdesouche.com post on the rapper’s “anti-France” and homophobic lyrics, reported French radio station RFI on 14 May 2016. The site, along with National Front party members, in particular […]

INSIGHT 2015 publication: Targeting the Arts

» Read on issuu.com Targeting the Arts Documenting incidents of censorship has never been enough. From the very beginning Freemuse has attempted to put censorship of music and arts into a larger context. In 2015 we introduced INSIGHT – a series of articles providing readers with analytical stories on censorship of the arts and in-depth interviews […]

France: Lobby group gets Danish movie banned

In surely one of the most delayed instances of outrage in cinema history, a French administrative appeals court has temporarily banned Lars von Trier’s 2009 horror film ‘Antichrist’ over its sexual and violent content after pressure from the Catholic group Promouvoir, reported The Guardian, RFI, AFP and other news media. The decision was made on […]

France: Court rules Palme d’Or winner too offensive

Abdellatif Kechiche’s Palme d’Or winner at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, ‘La Vie d’Adèle’ (‘Blue is the Warmest Color’), lost its French operating permission on 9 December 2015 when a Paris court ruled that the film contains “realistic sex scenes likely to offend the sensibilities of a young audience.” The lesbian love story which many […]

France post-November 13: Musicians shocked but defiant

The massacre at the Bataclan concert hall spreads fear and generates financial losses but also determination to carry on. Daniel Brown reports from Paris two weeks after the attacks “Vive la musique, vive la liberté, vive la France, and vive EODM.” Eagles of Death Metal By what eerie twist of fate did the three assaillants launch their massacre […]

France: Deadly terror attack at rock concert in Paris

Over 80 rock music concertgoers are reported to have been shot dead in Paris. On 13 November 2015, 1,500 fans were attending a concert with the Californian rock band Eagles of Death Metal at the popular music venue Bataclan in Paris, France, when it was attacked by terrorist gunmen, and concertgoers were taken hostage.  
 The attack took place […]

France: Law on artistic freedom adopted by First House of French Parliament

On 29 September 2015, the First House of the French Parliament – Assemblée Nationale – adopted a new law on artistic freedom, architecture and heritage, which is now to be presented to the Senate. The law is to protect the principle of artistic freedom and freedom of dissemination. Laurence Cuny, who helped shape the law through […]

France: Verdict of three years imprisonment to rapper in Marseilles

The court in Marseilles summoned the French-Algerian rapper Lacrim (real name: Karim Zenoud), but he didn’t show up in court. He was consequently given status as a fugitive and sentenced in absentia to three years imprisonment. Lacrim was charged in court because of the video for his song ‘Viens, je t’emmène’, in which he uses […]

France: Artist finds coexisting hard in streets of Paris

On the night of 30-31 January 2015, French street artist Combo Culture Kidnapper was assaulted by four unidentified youth as he put up a wall painting bringing together the three symbols of monotheism. ‘Coexist’ depicts the Muslim crescent, the Jewish Star of David and the Christian cross – replacing the ‘c’, ‘x’ and ‘t’, respectively. It was […]

France: Prime minister intervenes to stop ban of posters for musical trio

The French Prime Minister stepped in to have a ban lifted on an advert for a musical trio called ‘The Priests’. The country’s tram and Metro network RATP came under fire for pushing France’s beloved secularity too far when it banned posters advertising a concert with Les Pretres in June 2015. Les Pretres (‘The Priests’) […]

France: Controversial comedian sentenced for Facebook post

A French court has handed out a two-month suspended prison sentence to prominent comedian and political activist Dieudonne M’bala M’bala. He was found guilty for a Facebook message that suggested sympathy with one of the gunmen in the deadly Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris. The 49-year-old comedian was convicted for being “an apologist for terrorism” […]

France: Court sets precedent in Facebook vagina artwork censorship battle

A Paris court has announced that it can preside over a French citizen’s legal case against Facebook in a battle against the censorship of a vagina painting, despite the social network’s terms and conditions stating it can only be tried in the US. The case was sparked in 2011 by the deletion of teacher and […]

France: French mayor bans Oscar nominated film from Mali

Jacques-Alain Bénisti, mayor of a Paris suburb, has tried to derail the screening of Abderrahmane Sissako’s ‘Timbuktu’, despite never having seen the film. The mayor feared “that the movie makes an apology for terrorism,” reported Le Figaro. According to Le Monde, Bénisti thought that young people would see the jihadists in the film as role […]

France: Satirical magazine brutally attacked by gunmen

Freemuse strongly condemns the brutal attack on Charlie Hebdo which has left 12 dead and five seriously injured. Our thoughts are with the victims, their families and colleagues. UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova and the French presiden also condemned the attack with automatic rifles on Charlie Hebdo staff members and police: “I am horrified by this shocking attack against […]

France: Mayor censors mural at ceramics museum

A mural by Jérôme Galvin commissioned for the grand reopening of a ceramics museum in a small French village was censored by the town’s new mayor who deemed Galvin’s images “insanities, vices, pornography” in an official statement. “In the room devoted to grotesque ceramics, I created a five-meter mural,” Galvin told Libération. “I took inspiration […]

France: Art festival cancelled after censorship row

The 13th edition of the Festival International d’Art Singulier in the city of Aubagne in the south of France has been called off by its organisers, and its director has stepped down, after the municipality tried to censor two works slated to be exhibited. The offending works, dubbed “pornographic” by the mayor’s office, are Marie […]

France/USA: End to Apple’s corporate censorship of French book

The digital edition of the book ‘La Femme’ has now been given a place in the Apple Store despite the fact that its cover has a topless woman. Almost a year after the book’s release, Apple first published and then censored the digital edition of the book in its Apple Store, iBooks, because of the […]

France: Open letter addresses censorship in the arts sector

An open letter, ‘Against censorship, action!’, signed by 20 organisations and published by the French organisation Observatoire de Liberté de Dréation on 24 March 2014, has focussed attention on the ongoing challenges of censorship in French arts and culture. The letter denounces what it calls a “legal arsenal” used by ultra-conservative groups to prosecute, sanction […]

France/USA: French novel falls foul of Apple’s breast inspectors

French publishing house Les Editions des Equateurs is protesting that Apple has declined to to carry its novel ‘La Femme’ online due to an excessively jubular cover. Bénédicte Martin’s book was released on 20 March 2014, but won’t be available via the fruity monolith due to an “inappropriate” image of a topless woman blended with […]

Artist Alert: December 2013 and January 2014 | Article 19

Newsletter from Article 19, published on article19.org on 12 February 2014: Art, in any form, constitutes a key medium through which information and ideas are imparted and received. Artist Alert, launched by ARTICLE 19 in 2008, highlights cases of artists around the world whose right to freedom of expression has been curtailed and abused, and […]

France: Strict defamation laws limit free expression | Index on Censorship

As the G20 nations prepare to meet in St Petersburg, Russia in early September 2013, Index on Censorship is exploring the nations’ records on free expression. Their article about France, headlined ‘France: Strict defamation and privacy laws limit free expression’ and published on 19 August 2013, contains the following paragraph about the artistic freedom of […]

Artist Alert: July 2013 | Article 19

Newsletter from Article 19, published on article19.org on 14 August 2013: Art, in any form, constitutes a key medium through which information and ideas are imparted and received. Artist Alert, launched by ARTICLE 19 in 2008, highlights cases of artists around the world whose right to freedom of expression has been curtailed and abused, and […]

Artist Alert: June 2013 | Article 19

Newsletter from Article 19, published at article19.org on 17 July 2013: Art, in any form, constitutes a key medium through which information and ideas are imparted and received. Artist Alert, launched by ARTICLE 19 in 2008, highlights cases of artists around the world whose right to freedom of expression has been curtailed and abused, and […]

France: Art museum censored by Facebook for nude photograph

On 1 March 2013, the Jeu de Paume art museum’s Facebook account was blocked for 24 hours, following a decision by Facebook to remove a photograph the Parisian museum posted on its page and which the social network ruled was a violation of its Rights and Responsibilities guidelines. Facebook warned that next time it happens, […]

France: Rap lyrics targeted

The French Minister of the Interior Manuel Valls wants to fight “aggressive” rap lyrics attacking the state, insulting the flag and women. This is the conclusion after a member of the senate had chosen to question him on the subject of what she called “absolutely unprecedented violence against France”. Manuel Valls first responded that “rap […]

France: Institutional censorship of art to guard ‘cultural neutrality’

“When my voice gets silenced, my rights are affected. When a cultural institution cannot uphold the rights and freedom of intellectual artistic expression of the artists they select to exhibit, it is inexcusable,” wrote the artist Sundus Abdul Hadi in response to the removal of her art piece at an exhibition Institut du Monde Arabe […]

 

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