The political cartoonist’s right to freedom of expression

  • Malcolm Evans
Keywords: cartoonists, freedom of expression, editorial policy, political activism, media freedom


On 11 August 2003, after producing some 1600 cartoons, Malcolm Evans was controversially dismissed from his position as editorial cartoonist at The New Zealand Herald because he had refused to accept that the editor had the right to dictate the subjects he might address. This invited commentary for Pacific Journalism Review is published to further debate. Evans argues: ‘While I have always respected the editor’s right to reject a cartoon, he can never have the right to direct it – an understanding that was mutually agreed as a condition of my hire when I took the Herald job six years earlier. Rejection is an editor’s prerogative – direction is censorship. Although I have moved on personally as a professional cartoonist, I am concerned that the precedent set has the potential to affect the work of others.’


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How to Cite
Evans, M. (2004). The political cartoonist’s right to freedom of expression. Pacific Journalism Review : Te Koakoa, 10(2), 71-80.