What is freedom of speech in Haroun and the sea of stories

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currerbell eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Rusdie knows what he is talking about when he writes about freedom of speech, especially artistic speech. Rusdie was famously under a fatwa for the depiction of Muslims in his novel The Satanic Verses. 

Interestingly, in Haroun and the Sea of Stories, it is not the limits of free speech RUsdie explore but instead, the dangers of excessive speech.

The Land of Gup and Land of Chup are at war. In this passage, we see how questioning authority leads to mutiny:

“The Chupwalas...turned out to be a disunited rabble. Just as Mudra the Shadow Warrior had predicted, many of them actually had to fight their own, treacherous shadows! And as for the rest, well, their vows of silence and their habits of secrecy had made them suspicious and distrustful of one another...The upshot was that the Chupwalas did not stand shoulder to shoulder, but betrayed one another, stabbed on another in the back, mutinied, hid deserted....”