This course is discontinued

MEVIT1814 – The 200th Anniversary of the Norwegian Constitution: Democracy, Freedom of Speech and the Media

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

In 1814, the year that has been called "the year of miracles", Norway went from being ruled by Denmark to having an independent constitution that supported a democratic political system. To celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Constitution, we invite all students to join a course that critically explores the media’s role in a democratic society and the principle of freedom of speech.

A great number of issues will be investigated in lectures by renowned scholars that will be of interest to students from different disciplines. The course will draw attention to particular historical events as well as look at the present and the future through posing the following questions:

  • Which role do the media play in a democratic society?
  • What are the political and philosophical arguments for the principle of freedom of speech?
  • What characterises the Norwegian media model?
  • Why and how has media regulation and censorship been implemented over time?
  • How is new communication surveillance technology threatening our freedom of speech – and other liberties?

In the course we invite students to participate in the lectures through posting comments and questions via Twitter, and also by actively partaking in seminars, discussing relevant literature and current dilemmas facing Western democracies today.

Learning outcome

  • You will get a basic introduction to theories of the media’s role in a democracy.
  • You will learn about significant perspectives on what constitutes "the freedom of speech".
  • You will get insight into important principles for media politics and regulation, and the development of the Norwegian media model.
  • After the course you will have a thorough understanding of important legal and ethical dilemmas concerning freedom of speech and expression, media regulation, censorship, and surveillance, and be able to discuss these matters with others


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Three day take home exam

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.

Facts about this course





Teaching language