Having a Laugh: comedy and offence today

Saturday 17 October, 13.10 until 13.50, Cinema 2, Barbican Artistic Freedom

Stand-up comedy is booming in the twenty-first century. But increasing numbers of stand-ups admit they refuse to play some gigs for fear of being accused of hate speech.

Is political correctness killing comedy or have the standards of acceptability simply changed? Is comedy still the vanguard of free speech?

Listen to the debate

Daniel O'Reilly
comedian, aka Dapper Laughs

Tom Slater
deputy editor, spiked; coordinator, Down With Campus Censorship!

Rupert Myers
barrister and writer

Produced by
David Bowden associate fellow, Academy of Ideas; culture writer
Recommended readings
The biggest threat to comedy to self censorship Tom Slater, spiked, 21 August 2015

Lenny Bruce: the Dapper Laughs of his day Tom Slater, spiked, August 2015

The Political Game-show

Multiculturalism and Identity politics get game show treatment in this fast paced fun show filmed with guests and volunteers in the WORLDbytes studios complete with ‘holiday shrub’.


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Next year's festival will be packed with more debates like this one. If you would like to come, get your ticket now via our 2016 tickets page.