William Turner

Lecturer in media studies

William Bennett Turner has taught courses on freedom of speech and the press at UC Berkeley for 33 years. He practiced law for 45 years, specializing in unusual litigation, including constitutional law. Turner argued three cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, including two First Amendment cases and dozens of cases in lower federal and state supreme courts. He is a graduate of Harvard University’s Law School and spent ten years practicing civil rights law for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Turner is the author of Free Speech for Some: How the Supreme Court is Weaponizing the First Amendment to Empower Corporations and the Religious Right (2019), Free Speech: Supreme Court Opinions from the Beginning to the Roberts Court (2019)(textbook), and Figures of Speech: First Amendment Heroes and Villains (2011). He has published articles in magazines, newspapers and law reviews as well as online. Turner was a legal affairs correspondent for KQED television in San Francisco and legal consultant to the PBS "We the People" series on the Constitution’s bicentennial. See more information at www.williambturner.com.