|Chicago has been a beacon of freedom attracting migrants from the
American countryside and immigrants from around the world. Struggling to
fulfill the promise of American democracy, Chicagoans have fought each other
and their government. They have marched in defiance of the law, and they have
marched in defense of the law. They have joined together, and they have
The stories you
will see here are part of a larger history of political, artistic, and social
ferment in Chicago over more than 150 years. Throughout the 1800s, Chicagoans,
like other Americans, struggled over definitions of democracy and citizenship.
That debate was transformed as industrialization and mass migration in the
twentieth century created a new context for free speech. And since 1950,
Chicagoans have wrested with the legacy of racial segregation, the Cold War,
Outspoken will encourage civic debate about the issues that have
consumed Chicago in the past and that occupy our attention today.