Leading authors have expressed their “grave concern” at a court ruling which has prevented a writer from publishing a book dealing with the sexual abuse he suffered as a child.
The author’s ex-wife has obtained a temporary injunction stopping the memoir’s release until the issue has been decided at trial. She argued that reading it would cause their 11 year-old son, who suffers from a number of disabilities, severe psychological harm.
So, somehow, reading about the trial itself won’t have the same effect?
Or is it that she knows she’ll get short shrift if she tries to interfere with the criminal justice system, but she gets free reign to wave her disabled child like a shroud to delay her ex-husband from publishing his book here..?
Now in a significant intervention, some of the country’s most prominent writers, including Sir Tom Stoppard, the British playwright, and Colin Thubron, the best-selling travel writer and novellist, have criticised the judgment as posing a “significant threat to freedom of expression” .
Well, quite! It took some convincing for this argument to be advanced, anyway:
The application for an injunction was initially refused by Mr Justice Bean but the mother appealed.
Her lawyers argued that the book constituted a misuse of private information and that publication of it was negligent by the father.
The appeal, heard by a panel led by Lady Justice Arden, said that on these two points, the appeal could not succeed, as the information was about the father, not the son, and because it would be “wholly inappropriate” for parents to be liable for damages over parenting decisions that they must make each day.
However, she said the mother’s third ground – that publication of the book could be seen as intentionally inflicting mental suffering – was sufficient to secure an injunction until a trial.
Is it just me, or does anyone else see the judge’s sex as a reason for the appeal’s success?