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Liberalism is a
political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relations between individuals, such as the distribution of reso ...

political
and
moral philosophy Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about reason, Metaphysics, existence, Epistemology, knowledge, Ethics, values, Philosophy of min ...
based on
liberty Broadly speaking, liberty is the ability to do as one pleases, or a right or immunity enjoyed by prescription or by grant (i.e. privilege). It is a synonym for the word freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change withou ...

liberty
,
consent of the governed Consent occurs when one person voluntarily agrees to the proposal or desires of another. It is a term of common speech, with specific definitions as used in such fields as the law, medicine, research, and sexual relationships. Consent as understo ...
and
equality before the law Equality before the law, also known as equality under the law, equality in the eyes of the law, legal equality, or legal egalitarianism, is the principle that all people must be equally protected by the law. The principle requires a systematic rul ...
."political rationalism, hostility to autocracy, cultural distaste for conservatism and for tradition in general, tolerance, and ..individualism". John Dunn. ''Western Political Theory in the Face of the Future'' (1993). Cambridge University Press. . Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of these principles, but they generally support
individual rights Group rights, also known as collective rights, are rights held by a group ''wikt:qua, qua'' a group rather than by its members severally; in contrast, individual rights are rights held by Individuality, individual people; even if they are group-di ...
(including
civil rights Civil and political rights are a class of rights Rights are legal Law is a system of rules created and law enforcement, enforced through social or governmental institutions to regulate behavior,Robertson, ''Crimes against humanity'', ...
and
human rights Human rights are moral A moral (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. ...
),
democracy Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' and ''kratos'' 'rule') is a form of government in which people, the people have the authority to deliberate and decide legislation ("direct democracy"), or to cho ...

democracy
,
secularism Secularism is the principle of seeking to conduct human affairs based on secular Secularity, also the secular or secularness (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-Euro ...

secularism
,
freedom of speech in London, 1974 Freedom of speech is a principle that supports the freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change without constraint. Something is "free" if it can change easily and is not constrained in its present state ...

freedom of speech
,
freedom of the press Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change without constraint. Something is "free" if it can change easily and is not constrained in its present state. In philosophy and religion, it is associated with having free will and being w ...
,
freedom of religion Freedom of religion or religious liberty is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or community, in public or private, to manifest religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship, and observance. It also includes the freed ...
and a
market economy A market economy is an economic system An economic system, or economic order, is a system A system is a group of interacting Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects have an effect upon one another. The ide ...
.
Yellow Yellow is the color between green and Orange (colour), orange on the Visible spectrum, spectrum of visible light. It is evoked by light with a dominant wavelength of roughly 575585 Nanometre, nm. It is a primary color in subtractive color syst ...

Yellow
is the
political colour Political colours are colours used to represent a political ideology An ideology () is a set of belief A belief is an Attitude (psychology), attitude that something is the case, or that some proposition about the world is truth, true. In ...
most commonly associated with liberalism. Liberalism became a distinct
movement Movement may refer to: Common uses * Movement (clockwork), the internal mechanism of a timepiece * Motion (physics), commonly referred to as movement Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * Movement (short story), "Movement", a shor ...
in the
Age of Enlightenment The Age of Enlightenment (also known as the Age of Reason or simply the Enlightenment); ger, Aufklärung, "Enlightenment"; it, L'Illuminismo, "Enlightenment"; pl, Oświecenie , "Enlightenment"; pt, Iluminismo, "Enlightenment"; es, link= ...
, when it became popular among
Western Western may refer to: Places *Western, Nebraska, a village in the US *Western, New York, a town in the US *Western Creek, Tasmania, a locality in Australia *Western Junction, Tasmania, a locality in Australia *Western world, countries that ide ...

Western
philosophers and economists. Liberalism sought to replace the
norms Norm, the Norm or NORM may refer to: In academic disciplines * Norm (geology), an estimate of the idealised mineral content of a rock * Norm (philosophy), a standard in normative ethics that is prescriptive rather than a descriptive or explanato ...
of hereditary privilege,
state religion A state religion (also called an established religion or official religion) is a religion Religion is a social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether ...
,
absolute monarchy Absolute monarchy (or absolutism as doctrine) is a form of monarchy in which the monarch holds supreme autocracy, autocratic authority, principally not being restricted by written laws, legislature, or customs. These are often hereditary monar ...
, the
divine right of kings In European Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic Monotheism, monotheistic religion based on the Life of Jesus in the New Testament, life and Teachings of Jesus, teachings of Jesus, Jesus of Nazareth. It is the Majo ...
and traditional conservatism with
representative democracy Representative democracy, also known as indirect democracy, is a type of democracy where elected persons represent Represent may refer to: * Represent (Compton's Most Wanted album), ''Represent'' (Compton's Most Wanted album) or the title song, ...
and the
rule of law The rule of law is defined in the ''Oxford English Dictionary The ''Oxford English Dictionary'' (''OED'') is the principal of the , published by (OUP). It traces the historical development of the English language, providing a compreh ...

rule of law
. Liberals also ended
mercantilist Mercantilism is an economic policy The economic policy of governments covers the systems for setting levels of taxation, government budgets, the money supply and interest rates as well as the labour market, nationalization, national owner ...

mercantilist
policies, royal monopolies and other barriers to trade, instead promoting free trade and marketization. Philosopher
John Locke John Locke (; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704) was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * ...

John Locke
is often credited with founding liberalism as a distinct tradition, based on the ''social contract'', arguing that each man has a
natural right Natural rights and legal rights are the two basic types of rights. * Natural rights are those that are not dependent on the laws or customs of any particular culture or government, and so are ''universal'', ''fundamental rights, fundamental'' an ...
to life, liberty and property and governments must not violate these
rights Rights are legal Law is a system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to form a unified whole. A system, surrounded and influenced by its environment, is desc ...
. While the British liberal tradition has emphasized expanding democracy, French liberalism has emphasized rejecting
authoritarianism Authoritarianism is a form of government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a mon ...
and is linked to
nation-building Nation-building is constructing or structuring a national identity National identity is a person's identity or sense of belonging to one state or to one nation A nation is a community of people formed on the basis of a common language, history ...
.Kirchner, p. 3. Leaders in the British
Glorious Revolution The Glorious Revolution of November 1688 ( ga, An Réabhlóid Ghlórmhar; gd, Rèabhlaid Ghlòrmhor; cy, Chwyldro Gogoneddus), the invasion also known as the ''Glorieuze Overtocht'' or Glorious Crossing by the Dutch, was the deposition of ...
of 1688, the
American Revolution The American Revolution was an ideological and political revolution which occurred in colonial North America between 1765 and 1783. The Americans in the Thirteen Colonies The Thirteen Colonies, also known as the Thirteen British Colo ...
of 1776 and the
French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) was a period of radical political and societal change in France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in Western Europe, consi ...

French Revolution
of 1789 used liberal philosophy to justify the armed overthrow of royal
sovereignty Sovereignty is the supreme authority within a territory. Sovereignty entails hierarchy within the state, as well as external autonomy for states. In any state, sovereignty is assigned to the person, body, or institution that has the ultimate a ...
. Liberalism started to spread rapidly especially after the French Revolution. The 19th century saw liberal governments established in nations across
Europe Europe is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical regions are commonly regarded as continents. Ordered ...
and
South America South America is a continent A continent is any of several large landmasses. Generally identified by convention (norm), convention rather than any strict criteria, up to seven geographical regions are commonly regarded as continent ...
, whereas it was well-established alongside
republicanism Republicanism is a political ideology An ideology () is a set of belief A belief is an Attitude (psychology), attitude that something is the case, or that some proposition about the world is truth, true. In epistemology, philosophers use ...
in the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...
. In
Victorian Britain In the history of the United Kingdom, the Victorian era was the period of Queen Victoria Victoria (Alexandrina Victoria; 24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 18 ...
, it was used to critique the political establishment, appealing to science and reason on behalf of the people. During 19th and early 20th century, liberalism in the Ottoman Empire and Middle East influenced periods of reform such as the
Tanzimat The Tanzimat (; ota, تنظيمات, translit=Tanzimāt, lit=Reorganization, ''see'' nizām) was a period of reform Reform ( lat, reformo) means the improvement or amendment of what is wrong, corrupt, unsatisfactory, etc. The use of the word i ...
and
Al-Nahda The Nahda ( ar, النهضة, translit=an-nahḍa, meaning "the Awakening" or "the Renaissance The Renaissance ( , ) , from , with the same meanings. was a period in European history marking the transition from the Middle Ages ...
as well as the rise of
constitutionalism Constitutionalism is "a compound of ideas, attitudes, and patterns of behavior elaborating the principle that the authority of government derives from and is limited by a body of fundamental law". Political organizations are constitutional ...

constitutionalism
,
nationalism Nationalism is an idea and movement that holds that the nation A nation is a community A community is a social unitThe term "level of analysis" is used in the social sciences to point to the location, size, or scale of a research target ...
and secularism. These changes, along with other factors, helped to create a sense of crisis within
Islam Islam (; ar, اَلْإِسْلَامُ, al-’Islām, "submission
o God Oh God may refer to: * An exclamation; similar to "oh no", "oh yes", "oh my", "aw goodness", "ah gosh", "ah gawd"; see interjection An interjection is a word or expression that occurs as an utterance on its own and expresses a spontaneous feeling ...
) is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic monotheistic religion teaching that Muhammad is a Muhammad in Islam, messenger of God.Peters, F. E. 2009. "Allāh." In , ed ...
, which continues to this day, leading to
Islamic revivalism Islamic revival ( ar, تجديد'' '', lit., "regeneration, renewal"; also ', "Islamic awakening") refers to a revival of the Islam Islam (;There are ten pronunciations of ''Islam'' in English, differing in whether the first or second sylla ...
. Before 1920, the main ideological opponents of liberalism were
communism Communism (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Repu ...

communism
,
conservatism Conservatism is an aesthetic Aesthetics, or esthetics (), is a branch of philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about reason, Metaphysics, existence, Epistemology, kno ...
and
socialism Socialism is a political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relations between individuals, ...
, but liberalism then faced major ideological challenges from
fascism Fascism () is a form of far-right, authoritarian ultranationalism characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, and strong regimentation of society and the economy that rose to prominence in early 20th-century Europ ...

fascism
and
Marxism–Leninism Marxism–Leninism is a communist ideology and the main communist movement throughout the 20th century.Lansford, Thomas (2007). ''Communism''. New York: Cavendish Square Publishing. pp. 9–24, 36–44. . "By 1985, one-third of the world's po ...
as new opponents. During the 20th century, liberal ideas spread even further, especially in Western Europe, as
liberal democracies Liberal democracy, also referred to as Western democracy, is the combination of a liberal Liberal or liberalism may refer to: Politics *a supporter of liberalism, a political and moral philosophy **Liberalism by country *an adherent of a Li ...
found themselves as the winners' in both world wars. In Europe and North America, the establishment of
social liberalism Social liberalism (german: Sozialliberalismus, es, socioliberalismo) also known as New liberalism in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Brita ...
(often called simply ''liberalism'' in the United States) became a key component in the expansion of the
welfare state The welfare state is a form of government in which the state (or a well-established network of social institutions) protects and promotes the economic and social well-being of its citizens, based upon the principles of equal opportunity Equal o ...
. Today,
liberal parties This article gives information on liberalism worldwide. It is an overview of parties that adhere to some form of liberalism and is therefore a list of liberal parties around the world. Introduction The definition of liberal party is highly debat ...
continue to wield power and influence throughout the world. The fundamental elements of
contemporary society Contemporary society, according to social and political scientists, is characterised by at least three fundamental directions: * increasing human interconnection through a network of relationships that is progressively covering the whole planet; ...

contemporary society
have liberal roots. The early waves of liberalism popularised economic individualism while expanding
constitution A constitution is an aggregate of fundamental principles A principle is a proposition or value that is a guide for behavior or evaluation. In law, it is a rule Rule or ruling may refer to: Human activity * The exercise of political ...

constitution
al
government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Departmen ...

government
and
parliament In modern politics and history, a parliament is a legislative A legislature is an assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of ...

parliament
ary authority.Gould, p. 3. Liberals sought and established a constitutional order that prized important individual freedoms, such as
freedom of speech in London, 1974 Freedom of speech is a principle that supports the freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change without constraint. Something is "free" if it can change easily and is not constrained in its present state ...

freedom of speech
and
freedom of association Freedom of association encompasses both an individual's right to join or leave groups voluntarily, the right of the group to take collective action to pursue the interests of its members, and the right of an association to accept or decline memb ...
; an
independent judiciaryJudicial independence is the concept that the judiciary The judiciary (also known as the judicial system, judicature, judicial branch, judiciative branch, and court or judiciary system) is the system of court A court is any person or instituti ...
and public
trial by jury A jury trial, or trial by jury, is a lawful proceeding in which a jury A jury is a sworn body of people (the jurors) convened to render an impartiality, impartial verdict (a Question of fact, finding of fact on a question) officially submit ...
; and the abolition of
aristocratic Aristocracy ( grc-gre, ἀριστοκρατία , from 'excellent', and , 'rule') is a form of government that places strength in the hands of a small, privileged ruling class, the aristocrats. The term derives from the Greek ''aristokrat ...
privileges. Later waves of modern liberal thought and struggle were strongly influenced by the need to expand civil rights.Worell, p. 470. Liberals have gender and racial equality in their drive to promote civil rights and a global civil rights movement in the 20th century achieved several objectives towards both goals. Other goals often accepted by liberals include
universal suffrage Universal suffrage (also called universal franchise, general suffrage, and common suffrage of the common man) gives the right to vote Suffrage, political franchise, or simply franchise, is the right to vote in public, political elections (a ...
and
universal access to education Universal access to education Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, value (ethics), values, morals, beliefs, and habits. Educational methods include teaching, training, storytelli ...
.


Etymology and definition

Words such as ''
liberal Liberal or liberalism may refer to: Politics *a supporter of liberalism, a political and moral philosophy **Liberalism by country *an adherent of a Liberal Party Arts, entertainment and media *''El Liberal'', a Spanish newspaper published betw ...
'', ''
liberty Broadly speaking, liberty is the ability to do as one pleases, or a right or immunity enjoyed by prescription or by grant (i.e. privilege). It is a synonym for the word freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change withou ...
'', ''
libertarian Libertarianism (from french: libertaire, "libertarian"; from la, libertas, "freedom") is a political philosophy Political philosophy or political theory is the philosophical Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and funda ...
'' and ''
libertine A libertine is a person devoid of most moral principles, a sense of responsibility, or sexual restraints, which are seen as unnecessary or undesirable, especially someone who ignores or even spurns accepted morals and forms of behaviour sanctifi ...
'' all trace their history to the Latin ''
liber In ancient Roman religion Religion in ancient Rome includes the ethnic religion of Ancient Rome that the ancient Romans, Romans used to define themselves as a people, as well as the religious practices of peoples brought under Roman rul ...
'', which means "
free Free may refer to: Concept * Freedom, having the ability to act or change without constraint * Emancipate, to procure political rights, as for a disenfranchised group * Free will, control exercised by rational agents over their actions and decis ...
".Gross, p. 5. One of the first recorded instances of the word ''liberal'' occurs in 1375, when it was used to describe the
liberal arts Liberal arts education (from Latin "free" and "art or principled practice") is the traditional academic program in Western higher education. ''Liberal arts'' takes the term ''Art (skill), art'' in the sense of a learned skill rather than spec ...
in the context of an education desirable for a free-born man. The word's early connection with the classical education of a medieval university soon gave way to a proliferation of different denotations and connotations. ''Liberal'' could refer to "free in bestowing" as early as 1387, "made without stint" in 1433, "freely permitted" in 1530 and "free from restraint"—often as a pejorative remark—in the 16th and the 17th centuries. In 16th century
England England is a Countries of the United Kingdom, country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to its west and Scotland to its north. The Irish Sea lies northwest of England and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. E ...

England
, ''liberal'' could have positive or negative attributes in referring to someone's generosity or indiscretion. In ''
Much Ado About Nothing ''Much Ado About Nothing'' is a Shakespearean comedy, comedy by William Shakespeare thought to have been written in 1598 and 1599.See textual notes to ''Much Ado About Nothing'' in ''The Norton Shakespeare'' (W. W. Norton & Company, 1997 ) p. ...
'',
William Shakespeare William Shakespeare (bapt. 26 April 1564 – 23 April 1616) was an English playwright, poet and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's greatest dramatist. He is often called England's national p ...

William Shakespeare
wrote of "a liberal villaine" who "hath ..confest his vile encounters". With the rise of the
Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * Age of Enlightenment, period in Western intellectual history from the late 17th to late 18th century, centered in France but also encompassing: ** Midlands Enlightenment ...
, the word acquired decisively more positive undertones, being defined as "free from narrow prejudice" in 1781 and "free from bigotry" in 1823. In 1815, the first use of the word "liberalism" appeared in English. In Spain, the ''
liberales Liberales is an independent liberal Liberal or liberalism may refer to: Politics *a supporter of liberalism, a political and moral philosophy **Liberalism by country *an adherent of a Liberal Party Arts, entertainment and media *''El Libera ...
'', the first group to use the liberal label in a political context, fought for decades for the implementation of the 1812 Constitution. From 1820 to 1823 during the ''
Trienio Liberal #REDIRECT Trienio Liberal The ''Trienio Liberal'' (, "Liberal Triennium") is a period of three years in the modern history of Spain between 1820 and 1823, when a liberal government ruled Spain after a military uprising in January 1820 by the lieu ...
'',
King Ferdinand VII , house = Bourbon , father = Charles IV of Spain , mother = Maria Luisa of Parma , birth_date = 14 October 1784 , birth_place = El Escorial, Spain , * gl, Reino de España, * oc, Reiaume d'Espanha, , , image_fla ...
was compelled by the ''liberales'' to swear to uphold the Constitution. By the middle of the 19th century, ''liberal'' was used as a politicised term for parties and movements worldwide. Over time, the meaning of the word ''liberalism'' began to diverge in different parts of the world. According to the ''
Encyclopædia Britannica The (Latin for "British Encyclopaedia") is a general knowledge English-language encyclopaedia which is now published exclusively as an online encyclopedia, online encyclopaedia. It was formerly published by Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., ...
'': "In the United States, liberalism is associated with the welfare-state policies of the New Deal programme of the Democratic administration of , whereas in Europe it is more commonly associated with a commitment to limited government and ''
laissez-faire ''Laissez-faire'' ( ; from french: laissez faire , ) is an economic system An economic system, or economic order, is a system A system is a group of interacting Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects hav ...
'' economic policies". Consequently, in the United States the ideas of
individualism Individualism is the Ethics, moral stance, political philosophy, ideology and social outlook that emphasizes the intrinsic worth of the individual. Individualists promote the exercise of one's goals and desires and to value independence and self ...
and ''laissez-faire'' economics previously associated with
classical liberalism Classical liberalism is a political ideology and a History of liberalism, branch of liberalism that advocates free market, civil liberties under the rule of law with an emphasis on limited government, economic freedom, and political freedom. I ...
became the basis for the emerging school of
libertarian Libertarianism (from french: libertaire, "libertarian"; from la, libertas, "freedom") is a political philosophy Political philosophy or political theory is the philosophical Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and funda ...
thought and are key components of
American conservatism Conservatism in the United States is a political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relati ...
. Unlike Europe and Latin America, the word ''liberalism'' in North America almost exclusively refers to
social liberalism Social liberalism (german: Sozialliberalismus, es, socioliberalismo) also known as New liberalism in the United Kingdom The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Brita ...
. The dominant Canadian party is the
Liberal Party The Liberal Party is any of many political parties A political party is an organization that coordinates candidates to compete in a particular country's elections. It is common for the members of a party to hold similar ideas about politics, ...
and the
Democratic PartyDemocratic Party most often refers to: *Democratic Party (United States) Democratic Party and similar terms may also refer to: Active parties Africa *Botswana Democratic Party *Democratic Party of Equatorial Guinea *Gabonese Democratic Party *Democ ...
is usually considered liberal in the United States.


Philosophy

Liberalism—both as a political current and an intellectual tradition—is mostly a modern phenomenon that started in the 17th century, although some liberal philosophical ideas had precursors in
classical antiquity Classical antiquity (also the classical era, classical period or classical age) is the period of cultural history History (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, ...
and in
Imperial China The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty The Shang dynasty (), also historically known as the Yin dynasty (), was a Chinese dynasty that ruled in the middle and ...
. The
Roman Emperor The Roman emperor was the ruler of the Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn Rhōmaíōn) was the post-Republican Republican can refer to: Politica ...
Marcus Aurelius Marcus Aurelius Antoninus ( ; 26 April 121 – 17 March 180) was a Roman emperor The Roman emperor was the ruler of the Roman Empire during the History of the Roman Empire, imperial period (starting in 27 BC). The emperors used a vari ...

Marcus Aurelius
praised, "the idea of a polity administered with regard to equal rights and equal freedom of speech, and the idea of a kingly government which respects most of all the freedom of the governed". Scholars have also recognised a number of principles familiar to contemporary liberals in the works of several
Sophists A sophist ( el, σοφιστής, ''sophistes'') was a teacher in ancient Greece Ancient Greece ( el, Ἑλλάς, Hellás) was a civilization belonging to a period of History of Greece, Greek history from the Greek Dark Ages of the 12th–9 ...
and in the ''Funeral Oration'' by
Pericles Pericles (; grc-x-attic, Περικλῆς, in Classical Attic; c. 495 – 429 BC) was a Greek statesman and general of Athens , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens montage. Click ...

Pericles
.. Liberal philosophy symbolises an extensive intellectual tradition that has examined and popularised some of the most important and controversial principles of the modern world. Its immense scholarly and academic output has been characterised as containing "richness and diversity", but that diversity often has meant that liberalism comes in different formulations and presents a challenge to anyone looking for a clear definition.. Continental European liberalism is divided between
moderate Moderate is an ideological category which designates a rejection of radical politics, radical or extremism, extreme views, especially in regard to politics and religion. A moderate is considered someone occupying any mainstream position avoiding ext ...

moderate
s and
progressives Progressivism is a political philosophy in support of social reform. Based on the idea of progress in which advancements in science, technology, economic development and social organization are vital to the improvement of the human condition, ...
, with the moderates tending to
elitism Elitism is the belief or notion that individuals who form an elite—a select group of people perceived as having an intrinsic quality (philosophy), quality, high intellect, wealth, power (social and political), power, notability, special Skill, ...
and the progressives supporting the universalisation of fundamental institutions such as
universal suffrage Universal suffrage (also called universal franchise, general suffrage, and common suffrage of the common man) gives the right to vote Suffrage, political franchise, or simply franchise, is the right to vote in public, political elections (a ...
,
universal education Universal access to education Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, value (ethics), values, morals, beliefs, and habits. Educational methods include teaching, training, storytelli ...
and the expansion of
property rights The right to property, or the right to own property (cf. ownership Ownership is the state or fact of exclusive rights and control over property, which may be any asset, including an object, land or real estate, intellectual property, or until th ...
. Over time, the moderates displaced the progressives as the main guardians of continental European liberalism.


Major themes

Although all liberal doctrines possess a common heritage, scholars frequently assume that those doctrines contain "separate and often contradictory streams of thought". The objectives of liberal theorists and philosophers have differed across various times, cultures and continents. The diversity of liberalism can be gleaned from the numerous qualifiers that liberal thinkers and movements have attached to the very term "liberalism", including
classical Classical may refer to: European antiquity *Classical antiquity, a period of history from roughly the 7th or 8th century B.C.E. to the 5th century C.E. centered on the Mediterranean Sea *Classical architecture, architecture derived from Greek and ...
,
egalitarian Egalitarianism (), or equalitarianism, is a school of thought within political philosophy that builds from the concept of social equality, prioritizing it for all people. Egalitarian doctrines are generally characterized by the idea that all hu ...
,
economic An economy (; ) is an area of the production Production may be: Economics and business * Production (economics) * Production, the act of manufacturing goods * Production, in the outline of industrial organization, the act of making products ...
,
social Social organisms, including humans, live collectively in interacting populations. This interaction is considered social whether they are aware of it or not, and whether the exchange is voluntary/involuntary. Etymology The word "Social" derives fr ...
,
welfare state The welfare state is a form of government in which the state (or a well-established network of social institutions) protects and promotes the economic and social well-being of its citizens, based upon the principles of equal opportunity Equal o ...
,
ethical Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that "involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong action (philosophy), behavior".''Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy'"Ethics"/ref> The field of ethics, al ...

ethical
,
humanist Humanism is a philosophical Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about reason, existence, knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of someone or some ...

humanist
,
deontological In moral philosophy Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about reason, Metaphysics, existence, Epistemology, knowledge, Ethics, v ...
, perfectionist,
democratic Democrat, Democrats, or Democratic may refer to: *A proponent of democracy Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' and ''kratos'' 'rule') is a form of government in which people, the people have the a ...

democratic
and
institution Institutions, according to Samuel P. Huntington Samuel Phillips Huntington (April 18, 1927 – December 24, 2008) was an American political scientist, adviser and academic. He spent more than half a century at Harvard University Ha ...
al, to name a few. Despite these variations, liberal thought does exhibit a few definite and fundamental conceptions. Political philosopher John Gray identified the common strands in liberal thought as being individualist, egalitarian, meliorist and universalist. The individualist element avers the ethical primacy of the human being against the pressures of social
collectivism Collectivism is a value that is characterized by emphasis on cohesiveness Group cohesiveness (also called group cohesion and social cohesion) arises when bonds link members of a social group to one another and to the group as a whole. Although c ...
, the egalitarian element assigns the same
moral A moral (from Latin ''morālis'') is a message that is conveyed or a lesson to be learned from a narrative, story or wikt:event, event. The moral may be left to the hearer, reader, or viewer to determine for themselves, or may be explicitly enca ...

moral
worth and status to all individuals, the meliorist element asserts that successive generations can improve their sociopolitical arrangements and the universalist element affirms the moral unity of the human species and marginalises local
cultural Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior Social behavior is behavior Behavior (American English) or behaviour (British English; American and British English spelling differences#-our, -or, see spelling diff ...

cultural
differences.Gray, p. xii. The meliorist element has been the subject of much controversy, defended by thinkers such as
Immanuel Kant Immanuel Kant (, , ; 22 April 1724 – 12 February 1804) was a German philosopher A philosopher is someone who practices philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about r ...

Immanuel Kant
who believed in human progress while suffering criticism by thinkers such as
Jean-Jacques Rousseau Jean-Jacques Rousseau (, , ; 28 June 1712 – 2 July 1778) was a Republic of Geneva, Genevan philosopher, writer, and composer. His political philosophy influenced the progress of the Age of Enlightenment, Enlightenment throughout Europe, as w ...

Jean-Jacques Rousseau
, who instead believed that human attempts to improve themselves through social
cooperation Cooperation (written as co-operation in British English British English (BrE) is the standard dialect A standard language (also standard variety, standard dialect, and standard) is a language variety that has undergone substantial ...

cooperation
would fail. Describing the liberal temperament, Gray claimed that it "has been inspired by scepticism and by a fideistic certainty of divine revelation  ..it has exalted the power of reason even as, in other contexts, it has sought to humble reason's claims". The liberal philosophical tradition has searched for validation and justification through several intellectual projects. The moral and political suppositions of liberalism have been based on traditions such as natural rights and utilitarian theory, although sometimes liberals even requested support from scientific and religious circles. Through all these strands and traditions, scholars have identified the following major common facets of liberal thought: believing in equality and individual liberty, supporting private property and individual rights, supporting the idea of limited constitutional government, and recognising the importance of related values such as pluralism,
toleration Toleration is the allowing, permitting, or of an action, idea, object, or person which one dislikes or disagrees with. Political scientist Andrew R. Murphy explains that "We can improve our understanding by defining "toleration" as a set of so ...
, autonomy,
bodily integrity Bodily integrity is the inviolability of the physical body and emphasizes the importance of personal autonomy File:Новая Кукковка.jpg, The Republic of Karelia is an autonomous Federal subjects of Russia, federal subject in Russia, ...
and
consent Consent occurs when one person voluntarily agrees to the proposal or desires of another. It is a term of common speech, with specific definitions as used in such fields as the law, medicine, research, and sexual relationships. Consent as under ...
.


Classical and modern


John Locke and Thomas Hobbes

Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * Age of Enlightenment, period in Western intellectual history from the late 17th to late 18th century, centered in France but also encompassing: ** Midlands Enlightenment ...
philosophers are given credit for shaping liberal ideas. These ideas were first drawn together and systematized as a distinct
ideology An ideology () is a set of belief A belief is an attitude Attitude may refer to: Philosophy and psychology * Attitude (psychology) In psychology Psychology is the science of mind and behavior. Psychology includes the study of ...
by the English philosopher
John Locke John Locke (; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704) was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * ...

John Locke
, generally regarded as the father of modern liberalism.Delaney, p. 18.Godwin et al., p. 12.
Thomas Hobbes Thomas Hobbes ( ; sometimes known as Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury; 5 April 1588 – 4 December 1679) was an , considered to be one of the founders of modern . Hobbes is best known for his 1651 book ', in which he expounds an influential form ...
attempted to determine the purpose and the justification of governing authority in a post-civil war England. Employing the idea of a ''
state of nature The state of nature, in moral A moral (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', me ...
'' — a hypothetical war-like scenario prior to the state — he constructed the idea of a ''
social contract In moral A moral (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power ...
'' that individuals enter into to guarantee their security and in so doing form the State, concluding that only an absolute sovereign would be fully able to sustain such security. Hobbes had developed the concept of the social contract, according to which individuals in the anarchic and brutal state of nature came together and voluntarily ceded some of their individual rights to an established state authority, which would create laws to regulate social interactions to mitigate or mediate conflicts and enforce justice. Whereas Hobbes advocated a strong monarchical commonwealth (the
Leviathan Leviathan (; , ) is a sea serpent A sea serpent or sea dragon is a type of dragon A dragon is a large, snake, serpentine, legendary creature that appears in the folklore of many cultures worldwide. Beliefs about dragons vary consid ...
), Locke developed the then-radical notion that government acquires consent from the governed which has to be constantly present for the government to remain legitimate. While adopting Hobbes's idea of a state of nature and social contract, Locke nevertheless argued that when the monarch becomes a
tyrant A tyrant (from Ancient Greek , ''tyrannos''), in the modern English language, English usage of the word, is an absolute ruler who is unrestrained by law, or one who has usurped a legitimate ruler's sovereignty. Often portrayed as cruel, ty ...

tyrant
, it constitutes a violation of the social contract, which protects life, liberty and property as a natural right. He concluded that the people have a right to overthrow a tyrant. By placing the security of life, liberty and property as the supreme value of law and authority, Locke formulated the basis of liberalism based on social contract theory. To these early enlightenment thinkers, securing the most essential amenities of life—
liberty Broadly speaking, liberty is the ability to do as one pleases, or a right or immunity enjoyed by prescription or by grant (i.e. privilege). It is a synonym for the word freedom Freedom, generally, is having the ability to act or change withou ...

liberty
and
private property Private property is a legal designation for the ownership of property Property is a system of rights that gives people legal control of valuable things, and also refers to the valuable things themselves. Depending on the nature of the prope ...
among them—required the formation of a "sovereign" authority with universal jurisdiction. His influential '' Two Treatises'' (1690), the foundational text of liberal ideology, outlined his major ideas. Once humans moved out of their natural state and formed societies, Locke argued, "that which begins and actually constitutes any
political society A state is a polity A polity is an identifiable political entity—any group of people who have a collective identity, who are organized by some form of institutionalized social relations, and have a capacity to mobilize resources. A polity ...
is nothing but the consent of any number of freemen capable of a majority to unite and incorporate into such a society. And this is that, and that only, which did or could give beginning to any lawful government in the world". The stringent insistence that lawful government did not have a
supernatural The supernatural encompasses supposed phenomena or entities that are not subject to the Scientific law, laws of nature. This term is attributed to non-physical entity, non-physical entities, such as angels, demons, gods, and ghost, spirits. It ...

supernatural
basis was a sharp break with the dominant theories of governance which advocated the divine right of kings and echoed the earlier thought of
Aristotle Aristotle (; grc-gre, Ἀριστοτέλης ''Aristotélēs'', ; 384–322 BC) was a Greek philosopher A philosopher is someone who practices philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questio ...

Aristotle
. One political scientist described this new thinking as follows: "In the liberal understanding, there are no citizens within the regime who can claim to rule by natural or supernatural right, without the consent of the governed". Locke had other intellectual opponents besides Hobbes. In the ''First Treatise'', Locke aimed his arguments first and foremost at one of the doyens of 17th century English conservative philosophy:
Robert Filmer Sir Robert Filmer (c. 1588 – 26 May 1653) was an English political theorist who defended the divine right of kings The divine right of kings, divine right, or God's mandate is a political and religious doctrine of political legitima ...

Robert Filmer
. Filmer's ''Patriarcha'' (1680) argued for the
divine right of kings In European Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic Monotheism, monotheistic religion based on the Life of Jesus in the New Testament, life and Teachings of Jesus, teachings of Jesus, Jesus of Nazareth. It is the Majo ...
by appealing to
biblical The Bible (from Koine Greek τὰ βιβλία, ''tà biblía'', "the books") is a collection of religious texts or scriptures sacred to Christians, Jews, Samaritans, Rastafari and others. It appears in the form of an anthology, a compilat ...

biblical
teaching, claiming that the authority granted to
Adam Adam (; Aramaic Aramaic (: ''Arāmāyā''; : ; : ; ) is a language that originated among the in the ancient , at the end of the , and later became one of the most prominent languages of the . During its three thousand years long his ...

Adam
by
God In monotheism, monotheistic thought, God is conceived of as the supreme being, creator deity, creator, and principal object of Faith#Religious views, faith.Richard Swinburne, Swinburne, R.G. "God" in Ted Honderich, Honderich, Ted. (ed)''The Oxfo ...

God
gave successors of Adam in the male line of descent a right of dominion over all other humans and creatures in the world. However, Locke disagreed so thoroughly and obsessively with Filmer that the ''First Treatise'' is almost a sentence-by-sentence refutation of ''Patriarcha''. Reinforcing his respect for consensus, Locke argued that "conjugal society is made up by a voluntary compact between men and women".Kerber, p. 189. Locke maintained that the grant of dominion in
Genesis Genesis may refer to: Literature and comics * Genesis (DC Comics), a 1997 DC Comics crossover * Genesis (Marvel Comics), a Marvel Comics villain * Genesis, a fictional character from the ''Preacher (comics), Preacher'' comic-book series * ''Genes ...

Genesis
was not to men over women, as Filmer believed, but to humans over animals. Locke was certainly no
feminist Feminism is a range of social movements and ideology, ideologies that aim to define and establish the political, economic, personal, and social gender equality, equality of the sexes. Feminism incorporates the position that societies priori ...

feminist
by modern standards, but the first major liberal thinker in history accomplished an equally major task on the road to making the world more pluralistic: the integration of women into
social theory Social theories are analytical frameworks, or paradigm In science Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity, awareness, or understanding of someone or something, such as fa ...
. Locke also originated the concept of the
separation of church and state The separation of church and state is a philosophic and jurisprudential concept for defining political distance in the relationship between religious organizations Religion is a social system, social-cultural system of designated religi ...
.Feldman, Noah (2005). ''Divided by God''. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, p. 29 ("It took
John Locke John Locke (; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704) was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * ...

John Locke
to translate the demand for liberty of conscience into a systematic argument for distinguishing the realm of government from the realm of religion.")
Based on the social contract principle, Locke argued that the government lacked authority in the realm of individual conscience, as this was something rational people could not cede to the government for it or others to control. For Locke, this created a natural right in the liberty of conscience, which he argued must therefore remain protected from any government authority. He also formulated a general defence for
religious toleration Toleration is the allowing, permitting, or acceptance of an action, idea, object, or person which one dislikes or disagrees with. Political scientist Andrew R. Murphy explains that "We can improve our understanding by defining "toleration" as a ...
in his ''Letters Concerning Toleration''. Three arguments are central: (1) earthly judges, the state in particular, and human beings generally, cannot dependably evaluate the truth-claims of competing religious standpoints; (2) even if they could, enforcing a single " true religion" would not have the desired effect because belief cannot be compelled by
violence Violence is the use of physical force so as to injure, abuse, damage, or destroy. Other definitions are also used, such as the World Health Organization The World Health Organization (WHO) is a list of specialized agencies of the United Na ...
; (3) coercing religious uniformity would lead to more social disorder than allowing diversity. Locke was also influenced by the liberal ideas of
Presbyterian Presbyterianism is a part of the Reformed tradition Calvinism (also called the Reformed tradition, Reformed Christianity, Reformed Protestantism, or the Reformed faith) is a major branch of Protestantism Protestantism is a form of ...
politician and poet
John Milton John Milton (9 December 16088 November 1674) was an English poet and intellectual who served as a civil servant for the under its Council of State and later under . He wrote at a time of religious flux and political upheaval, and is best kno ...

John Milton
, who was a staunch advocate of freedom in all its forms. Milton argued for
disestablishment The separation of church and state is a philosophic and jurisprudential concept for defining political distance in the relationship between religious organizations Religious activities generally need some infrastructure to be conducted. F ...
as the only effective way of achieving broad
toleration Toleration is the allowing, permitting, or of an action, idea, object, or person which one dislikes or disagrees with. Political scientist Andrew R. Murphy explains that "We can improve our understanding by defining "toleration" as a set of so ...
. Rather than force a man's conscience, government should recognise the persuasive force of the gospel. As assistant to
Oliver Cromwell Oliver Cromwell (25 April 15993 September 1658) was an English general and statesman who, first as a subordinate and later as Commander-in-Chief, led armies An army (from Latin ''arma'' "arms, weapons" via Old French ''armée'', "armed" e ...

Oliver Cromwell
, Milton also took part in drafting a constitution of the independents (''Agreement of the People''; 1647) that strongly stressed the equality of all humans as a consequence of democratic tendencies. In his ''
Areopagitica ''Areopagitica; A speech of Mr. John Milton for the Liberty of Unlicenc'd Printing, to the Parlament of England'' is a 1644 prose polemic A polemic () is contentious rhetoric Rhetoric () is the Art (skill), art of persuasion, which ...
'', Milton provided one of the first arguments for the importance of freedom of speech—"the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties". His central argument was that the individual is capable of using reason to distinguish right from wrong. To be able to exercise this right, everyone must have unlimited access to the ideas of his fellow men in " a free and open encounter" and this will allow the good arguments to prevail. In a natural state of affairs, liberals argued, humans were driven by the instincts of survival and
self-preservation Self-preservation is a behavior or set of behaviors that ensures the survival Survival, or the act of surviving, is the propensity of something to continue existing, particularly when this is done despite conditions that might kill or destroy i ...
and the only way to escape from such a dangerous existence was to form a common and supreme power capable of arbitrating between competing human desires.. This power could be formed in the framework of a
civil society Civil society can be understood as the "third sector" of society, distinct from government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a State (polity), state. In the case of its broad ...
that allows individuals to make a voluntary social contract with the sovereign authority, transferring their natural rights to that authority in return for the protection of life, liberty and property. These early liberals often disagreed about the most appropriate form of government, but they all shared the belief that liberty was natural and that its restriction needed strong justification. Liberals generally believed in limited government, although several liberal philosophers decried government outright, with
Thomas Paine Thomas Paine (born Thomas Pain; – In the contemporary record as noted by Conway, Paine's birth date is given as January 29, 1736–37. Common practice was to use a dash or a slash to separate the old-style year from the new-style year. In the ...

Thomas Paine
writing "government even in its best state is a necessary evil"..


James Madison and Montesquieu

As part of the project to limit the powers of government, liberal theorists such as
James Madison James Madison Jr. (March 16, 1751June 28, 1836) was an American statesman, diplomat, expansionist, philosopher, and Founding Father The following list of national founding figures is a record, by country, of people who were credited wi ...

James Madison
and
Montesquieu Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu, Lot-et-Garonne, Montesquieu (; ; 18 January 168910 February 1755), generally referred to as simply Montesquieu, was a French judge, intellectual, man of letters, historian, and po ...

Montesquieu
conceived the notion of
separation of powers Separation of powers refers to the division of a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' ( ...
, a system designed to equally distribute governmental authority among the
executive Executive may refer to: Role, title, or function * Executive (government), branch of government that has authority and responsibility for the administration of state bureaucracy * Executive, a senior management role in an organization ** Chief exec ...
,
legislative A legislature is an assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of collective) who use parliamentary procedure Parliamentary procedure ...
and
judicial The judiciary (also known as the judicial system, judicature, judicial branch, judiciative branch, and court or judiciary system) is the system of court A court is any person or institution, often as a government A government i ...
branches. Governments had to realise, liberals maintained, that poor and improper governance gave the people authority to overthrow the ruling order through any and all possible means, even through outright violence and
revolution In political science Political science is the scientific study of politics Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with making decisions in groups, or other forms of power relations between individuals, suc ...

revolution
, if needed. Contemporary liberals, heavily influenced by social liberalism, have continued to support limited
constitutional government A constitution is an aggregate of fundamental principles A principle is a proposition or value that is a guide for behavior or evaluation. In law, it is a rule Rule or ruling may refer to: Human activity * The exercise of political ...
while also advocating for state services and provisions to ensure equal rights. Modern liberals claim that formal or official guarantees of individual rights are irrelevant when individuals lack the material means to benefit from those rights and call for a greater role for government in the administration of economic affairs. Early liberals also laid the groundwork for the separation of church and state. As heirs of the Enlightenment, liberals believed that any given social and political order emanated from human interactions, not from
divine will The will of God or divine will is the concept of a God God, in monotheistic thought, is conceived of as the supreme being, creator, and principal object of faith Faith, derived from Latin ''fides'' and Old French ''feid'', is confidence ...
.Gould, p. 4. Many liberals were openly hostile to
religious belief A belief is an attitude that something is the case, or that some proposition about the world is truth, true. In epistemology, philosophers use the term "belief" to refer to attitudes about the world which can be either truth value, true or fals ...
itself, but most concentrated their opposition to the union of religious and political authority, arguing that faith could prosper on its own, without official sponsorship or administration by the state. Beyond identifying a clear role for government in modern society, liberals also have argued over the meaning and nature of the most important principle in liberal philosophy, namely liberty. From the 17th century until the 19th century, liberals (from
Adam Smith Adam Smith ( 1723 – 17 July 1790) was a Scottish economist, philosopher as well as a moral philosopher Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that "involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and ...

Adam Smith
to
John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), also cited as J. S. Mill, was an English philosopher, Political economy, political economist, Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), Member of Parliament (MP) and civil servant. One of the most i ...
) conceptualised liberty as the absence of interference from government and from other individuals, claiming that all people should have the freedom to develop their own unique abilities and capacities without being sabotaged by others.. Mill's ''
On Liberty ''On Liberty'' is a philosophical essay by the English philosopher John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), usually cited as J. S. Mill, was an List of British philosophers, English philosopher, Political economy, p ...
'' (1859), one of the classic texts in liberal philosophy, proclaimed, "the only freedom which deserves the name, is that of pursuing our own good in our own way". Support for ''laissez-faire''
capitalism Capitalism is an economic system An economic system, or economic order, is a system A system is a group of interacting Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects have an effect upon one another. The idea o ...

capitalism
is often associated with this principle, with
Friedrich Hayek Friedrich August von Hayek ( , ; 8 May 189923 March 1992), often referred to by his initials F. A. Hayek, was an Austrian-British economist, and philosopher who is best known for his defence of classical liberalism. Hayek shared the 1974 Nob ...
arguing in ''
The Road to Serfdom ''The Road to Serfdom'' ( German: ''Der Weg zur Knechtschaft'') is a book written between 1940 and 1943 by Austrian-British economist An economist is a practitioner in the social sciences, social science discipline of economics. The individu ...
'' (1944) that reliance on free markets would preclude totalitarian control by the state.


Coppet Group and Benjamin Constant

The development into maturity of modern classical in contrast to ancient liberalism took place before and soon after the French Revolution. One of the historic centres of this development was at
Coppet Castle Coppet Castle (French French (french: français(e), link=no) may refer to: * Something of, from, or related to France France (), officially the French Republic (french: link=no, République française), is a country primarily located in We ...
near
Geneva , neighboring_municipalities= Carouge Carouge () is a Municipalities of Switzerland, municipality in the Canton of Geneva, Switzerland. History Carouge is first mentioned in the Early Middle Ages as ''Quadruvium'' and ''Quatruvio''. In 124 ...

Geneva
where the eponymous
Coppet group The Coppet group (''Groupe de Coppet''), also known as the Coppet circle, was an informal intellectual and literary gathering centred on Germaine de Staël during the time period between the establishment of the Napoleonic First Empire (1804) a ...
gathered under the aegis of the exiled writer and salonnière,
Madame de StaëlMadame may refer to: * Madam Madam (), or madame ( or ), is a polite and formal form of address for women, often contracted to ma'am (pronounced in American English and in British English). The term derives from the French ''madame'' (); in F ...

Madame de Staël
in the period between the establishment of
Napoleon Napoléon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a French military and political leader. He rose to prominence during the French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) refers to the period that began with the Estates General o ...

Napoleon
's First Empire (1804) and the
Bourbon RestorationBourbon Restoration may refer to: * Bourbon Restoration in France The Bourbon Restoration was the period of French history The first written records for the history of France appeared in the Iron Age The Iron Age is the final epoch of the ...
of 1814–1815. The unprecedented concentration of European thinkers who met there was to have a considerable influence on the development of nineteenth century liberalism and incidentally of
romanticism Romanticism (also known as the Romantic era) was an artistic, literary, musical, and intellectual movement that originated in Europe towards the end of the 18th century, and in most areas was at its peak in the approximate period from 1800 to ...
. They included
Wilhelm von Humboldt Friedrich Wilhelm Christian Karl Ferdinand von Humboldt (, also , ; ; 22 June 1767 – 8 April 1835) was a philosopher, , , diplomat, and founder of the , which was named after him in 1949 (and also after his younger brother, , a ). He is espe ...

Wilhelm von Humboldt
,
Jean de SismondiJEAN was a dialect The term dialect (from Latin , , from the Ancient Greek word , , "discourse", from , , "through" and , , "I speak") is used in two distinct ways to refer to two different types of Linguistics, linguistic phenomena: * One usage r ...

Jean de Sismondi
,
Charles Victor de Bonstetten Charles Victor de Bonstetten (german: Karl Viktor von Bonstetten; 3 September 17453 February 1832) was a Switzerland, Swiss Liberalism, liberal writer. Life Charles Victor was born at Bern in Old Swiss Confederacy, Switzerland to one of its great ...
,
Prosper de Barante Prosper may refer to: __NOTOC__ Places in the United States * Prosper, Minnesota, an unincorporated community * Prosper, North Dakota, an unincorporated community * Prosper, Oregon, an unincorporated community * Prosper, Texas, a town Other u ...
, Henry Brougham,
Lord Byron George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron Byron, ( el, Λόρδος Βύρωνας, translit=Lórdos Výronas, translit-std=ISO; 22 January 1788 – 19 April 1824), simply known as Lord Byron, was an English poet and peer Peer may refer to: Socio ...

Lord Byron
,
Alphonse de Lamartine Alphonse Marie Louis de Prat de Lamartine, Knight of Pratz (; 21 October 179028 February 1869) was a French author, poet, and statesman who was instrumental in the foundation of the Second Republic and the continuation of the Tricolore as the ...

Alphonse de Lamartine
, Sir
James Mackintosh Sir James Mackintosh Royal Society of London, FRS FRSE (24 October 1765 – 30 May 1832) was a Scottish jurist, Whig (British political party), Whig politician and historian. His studies and sympathies embraced many interests. He was trained as a ...
, and August Wilhelm Schlegel. Among them was also one of the first thinkers to go by the name of "liberal", the Edinburgh University-educated Swiss Protestant, Benjamin Constant, who looked to the United Kingdom rather than to ancient Rome for a practical model of freedom in a large mercantile society. He drew a distinction between the "Liberty of the Ancients" and the "Liberty of the Moderns". The Liberty of the Ancients was a participatory Republicanism, republican liberty, which gave the citizens the right to influence politics directly through debates and votes in the public assembly. In order to support this degree of participation, citizenship was a burdensome moral obligation requiring a considerable investment of time and energy. Generally, this required a sub-group of slaves to do much of the productive work, leaving citizens free to deliberate on public affairs. Ancient Liberty was also limited to relatively small and homogenous male societies, in which they could congregate in one place to transact public affairs. The Liberty of the Moderns, in contrast, was based on the possession of civil liberties, the rule of law, and freedom from excessive state interference. Direct participation would be limited: a necessary consequence of the size of modern states, and also the inevitable result of having created a mercantile society in which there were no slaves but almost everybody had to earn a living through work. Instead, the voters would elect Legislator, representatives, who would deliberate in Parliament on behalf of the people and would save citizens from daily political involvement. The importance of Constant's writings on the liberty of the ancients and that of the "moderns" has informed understanding of liberalism, as has his critique of the French Revolution. The British philosopher and historian of ideas, Sir Isaiah Berlin has pointed to the debt owed to Constant.


British liberalism

Liberalism in the United Kingdom, Liberalism in Britain was based on core concepts such as classical economics, free trade, ''
laissez-faire ''Laissez-faire'' ( ; from french: laissez faire , ) is an economic system An economic system, or economic order, is a system A system is a group of interacting Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects hav ...
'' government with minimal intervention and taxation and a balanced budget. Classical liberals were committed to individualism, liberty and equal rights. Writers such as John Bright and Richard Cobden opposed both aristocratic privilege and property, which they saw as an impediment to the development of a class of yeoman farmers.Vincent, pp. 29–30 Beginning in the late 19th century, a new conception of liberty entered the liberal intellectual arena. This new kind of liberty became known as positive liberty to distinguish it from the prior negative liberty, negative version and it was first developed by British philosophy, British philosopher Thomas Hill Green. Green rejected the idea that humans were driven solely by self-interest, emphasising instead the complex circumstances that are involved in the evolution of our moral character.Adams, pp. 54–55. In a very profound step for the future of modern liberalism, he also tasked society and political institutions with the enhancement of individual freedom and identity and the development of moral character, will and reason and the state to create the conditions that allow for the above, giving the opportunity for genuine choice. Foreshadowing the new liberty as the freedom to act rather than to avoid suffering from the acts of others, Green wrote the following: Rather than previous liberal conceptions viewing society as populated by selfish individuals, Green viewed society as an organic whole in which all individuals have a duty to promote the common good. His ideas spread rapidly and were developed by other thinkers such as Leonard Trelawny Hobhouse and John A. Hobson. In a few years, this ''New Liberalism'' had become the essential social and political programme of the Liberal Party in Britain and it would encircle much of the world in the 20th century. In addition to examining negative and positive liberty, liberals have tried to understand the proper relationship between liberty and democracy. As they struggled to expand Universal suffrage, suffrage rights, liberals increasingly understood that people left out of the Voting, democratic decision-making process were liable to the "tyranny of the majority", a concept explained in Mill's ''On Liberty'' and in ''Democracy in America'' (1835) by Alexis de Tocqueville.. As a response, liberals began demanding proper safeguards to thwart majorities in their attempts at suppressing the Minority rights, rights of minorities. Besides liberty, liberals have developed several other principles important to the construction of their philosophical structure, such as equality, pluralism and toleration. Highlighting the confusion over the first principle, Voltaire commented that "equality is at once the most natural and at times the most chimeral of things". All forms of liberalism assume in some basic sense that individuals are equal.. In maintaining that people are naturally equal, liberals assume that they all possess the same right to liberty. In other words, no one is inherently entitled to enjoy the benefits of liberal society more than anyone else and all people are Equality before the law, equal subjects before the law.. Beyond this basic conception, liberal theorists diverge on their understanding of equality. American philosopher John Rawls emphasised the need to ensure not only equality under the law, but also the equal distribution of material resources that individuals required to develop their Motivation, aspirations in life. Libertarian thinker Robert Nozick disagreed with Rawls, championing the former version of Equal opportunity, Lockean equality instead. To contribute to the development of liberty, liberals also have promoted concepts like pluralism and toleration. By pluralism, liberals refer to the proliferation of opinions and beliefs that characterise a stable social order. Unlike many of their competitors and predecessors, liberals do not seek conformity and homogeneity in the way that people think. In fact, their efforts have been geared towards establishing a governing framework that Conflict resolution, harmonises and minimises conflicting views, but still allows those views to exist and flourish. For liberal philosophy, pluralism leads easily to toleration. Since individuals will hold diverging viewpoints, liberals argue, they ought to uphold and respect the right of one another to disagree.. From the liberal perspective, toleration was initially connected to
religious toleration Toleration is the allowing, permitting, or acceptance of an action, idea, object, or person which one dislikes or disagrees with. Political scientist Andrew R. Murphy explains that "We can improve our understanding by defining "toleration" as a ...
, with Baruch Spinoza condemning "the stupidity of religious persecution and ideological wars". Toleration also played a central role in the Kantianism, ideas of Kant and John Stuart Mill. Both thinkers believed that society will contain different conceptions of a good ethical life and that people should be allowed to make their own choices without interference from the state or other individuals.


Liberal economic theory

Adam Smith Adam Smith ( 1723 – 17 July 1790) was a Scottish economist, philosopher as well as a moral philosopher Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that "involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and ...

Adam Smith
's ''The Wealth of Nations'', published in 1776, followed by the French liberal economist, Jean-Baptiste Say's treatise on ''Say's Political Economy, Political Economy'' published in 1803 and expanded in 1830 with practical applications, were to provide most of the ideas of economics until the publication of
John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), also cited as J. S. Mill, was an English philosopher, Political economy, political economist, Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), Member of Parliament (MP) and civil servant. One of the most i ...
's ''Principles'' in 1848.Mills, pp. 63, 68 Smith addressed the motivation for economic activity, the causes of Pricing, prices and the distribution of wealth and the Economic policy, policies the state should follow in order to maximise wealth.Mills, p. 64 Smith wrote that as long as Supply and demand, supply, demand, prices and Competition (economics), competition were left free of government regulation, the pursuit of material self-interest, rather than altruism, would maximise the wealth of a society through profit-driven production of goods and services. An "invisible hand" directed individuals and firms to work toward the nation's good as an unintended consequence of efforts to maximise their own gain. This provided a moral justification for the accumulation of wealth, which had previously been viewed by some as sinful. Smith assumed that workers could be Salary, paid as low as was necessary for their survival, which was later transformed by David Ricardo and Thomas Robert Malthus into the "iron law of wages". His main emphasis was on the benefit of free internal and international trade, which he thought could increase wealth through specialisation in production. He also opposed restrictive trade preferences, state grants of Monopoly, monopolies and employers' organisations and trade unions. Government should be limited to defence, public works and the administration of justice, financed by Income tax, taxes based on income. Smith was one of the progenitors of the idea, which was long central to classical liberalism and has resurfaced in the globalisation literature of the later 20th and early 21st centuries, that free trade promotes peace. Smith's economics was carried into practice in the 19th century with the lowering of tariffs in the 1820s, the repeal of the Poor Relief Act 1662, Poor Relief Act that had restricted the mobility of labour in 1834 and the end of the rule of the East India Company over India in 1858.Mills, p. 69 In his ''Treatise'' (Traité d'économie politique), Say states that any production process requires effort, knowledge and the "application" of the entrepreneur. He sees entrepreneurs as intermediaries in the production process who combine productive factors such as land, capital and labour to meet the demand of consumers. As a result, they play a central role in the economy through their coordinating function. He also highlights qualities essential for successful entrepreneurship and focuses on judgement, in that they have continuously to assess market needs and the means to meet them. This requires an "unerring market sense". Say views entrepreneurial income primarily as the high revenue paid in compensation for their skills and expert knowledge. He does so by contrasting the enterprise function and the supply-of-capital-function which distinguishes the earnings of the entrepreneur on one hand and the remuneration of capital on the other. This clearly differentiates his theory from that of Joseph Schumpeter, who describes entrepreneurial rent as short-term profits which compensate for high risk (Schumpeterian rent). Say himself does also refer to risk and uncertainty along with innovation, without analysing them in detail. Say is also credited with Say's law, or the law of markets which may be summarised as: "Aggregate supply creates its own aggregate demand", and "Supply creates its own demand" or "Supply constitutes its own demand" and "Inherent in supply is the need for its own consumption". The related phrase "supply creates its own demand" was actually coined by John Maynard Keynes, who criticized Say's separate formulations as amounting to the same thing. Some advocates of Say's law who disagree with Keynes, have claimed that Say's law can actually be summarized more accurately as "production precedes consumption" and that what Say is actually stating, is that for consumption to happen one must produce something of value so that it can be traded for money or barter for consumption later. Say argues, "products are paid for with products" (1803, p. 153) or "a glut occurs only when too much resource is applied to making one product and not enough to another" (1803, pp. 178–179). Related reasoning appears in the work of
John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), also cited as J. S. Mill, was an English philosopher, Political economy, political economist, Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), Member of Parliament (MP) and civil servant. One of the most i ...
and earlier in that of his Scottish classical economist father James Mill (1808). Mill senior restates Say's law in 1808, writing: "production of commodities creates, and is the one and universal cause which creates a market for the commodities produced". In addition to Smith's and Say's legacies, Thomas Malthus' theories of population and David Ricardo Iron law of wages became central doctrines of classical economics.Mills, p. 76 Meanwhile, Jean-Baptiste Say challenged Smith's labour theory of value, believing that prices were determined by utility and also emphasised the critical role of the entrepreneur in the economy. However, neither of those observations became accepted by British economists at the time. Malthus wrote ''An Essay on the Principle of Population'' in 1798, becoming a major influence on classical liberalism. Malthus claimed that population growth would outstrip food production because population grew geometrically while food production grew arithmetically. As people were provided with food, they would reproduce until their growth outstripped the food supply. Nature would then provide a check to growth in the forms of vice and misery. No gains in income could prevent this and any welfare for the poor would be self-defeating. The poor were in fact responsible for their own problems which could have been avoided through self-restraint. Several liberals, including Adam Smith and Richard Cobden, argued that the free exchange of goods between nations would lead to world peace. Smith argued that as societies progressed the spoils of war would rise, but the costs of war would rise further, making war difficult and costly for industrialised nations. Cobden believed that military expenditures worsened the welfare of the state and benefited a small but concentrated elite minority; combining his Little Englander beliefs with opposition to the economic restrictions of mercantilist policies. To Cobden and many classical liberals, those who advocated peace must also advocate free markets. Utilitarianism was seen as a Legitimacy (political), political justification for the implementation of economic liberalism by British governments, an idea dominating economic policy from the 1840s. Although utilitarianism prompted legislative and administrative reform and John Stuart Mill's later writings on the subject foreshadowed the welfare state, it was mainly used as a premise for a ''laissez-faire'' approach. The central concept of utilitarianism, which was developed by Jeremy Bentham, was that public policy should seek to provide "the greatest happiness of the greatest number". While this could be interpreted as a justification for state action to Poverty reduction, reduce poverty, it was used by classical liberals to justify inaction with the argument that the net benefit to all individuals would be higher. His philosophy proved to be extremely influential on government policy and led to increased Benthamite attempts at government social control, including Robert Peel's Metropolitan Police, prison reforms, the workhouses and History of psychiatric institutions, asylums for the mentally ill.


Keynesian economics

During the Great Depression, the definitive liberal response to the economic crisis was given by the English economist John Maynard Keynes (1883–1946). Keynes had been "brought up" as a classical liberal, but especially after World War I became increasingly a welfare or social liberal. A prolific writer, among many other works, he had begun a theoretical work examining the relationship between unemployment, money and prices back in the 1920s. Keynes was deeply critical of the British government's austerity measures Great Depression in the United Kingdom, during the Great Depression. He believed that budget deficits were a good thing, a product of recessions. He wrote: "For Government borrowing of one kind or another is nature's remedy, so to speak, for preventing business losses from being, in so severe a slump as the present one, so great as to bring production altogether to a standstill". At the height of the Great Depression in 1933, Keynes published ''The Means to Prosperity'', which contained specific policy recommendations for tackling unemployment in a global recession, chiefly counter cyclical public spending. ''The Means to Prosperity'' contains one of the first mentions of the multiplier effect. Keynes's ''Masterpiece, magnum opus'', ''The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money'', was published in 1936 and served as a theoretical justification for the Economic interventionism, interventionist policies Keynes favoured for tackling a recession. The ''General Theory'' challenged the earlier neo-classical economics, neo-classical economic paradigm, which had held that provided it was unfettered by government interference, the Market (economics), market would naturally establish full employment equilibrium. Classical economics, Classical economists had believed in Say's law, which simply put states that "supply creates its own demand" and that in a free market workers would always be willing to lower their wages to a level where employers could profitably offer them jobs. An innovation from Keynes was the concept of Sticky (economics), price stickiness, i.e. the recognition that in reality workers often refuse to lower their wage demands even in cases where a classical economist might argue it is rationality, rational for them to do so. Due in part to price stickiness, it was established that the interaction of "aggregate demand" and "aggregate supply" may lead to stable unemployment equilibria and in those cases it is the state and not the market that economies must depend on for their salvation. The book advocated activist economic policy by government to stimulate demand in times of high unemployment, for example by spending on public works. In 1928, he wrote: "Let us be up and doing, using our idle resources to increase our wealth. ..With men and plants unemployed, it is ridiculous to say that we cannot afford these new developments. It is precisely with these plants and these men that we shall afford them". Where the market failed to properly allocate resources, the government was required to stimulate the economy until private funds could start flowing again—a "prime the pump" kind of strategy designed to boost industrial production.


Liberal feminist theory

Liberal feminism, the dominant tradition in History of feminism, feminist history, is an Individualism, individualistic form of feminist theory which focuses on women's ability to maintain their equality through their own actions and choices. Liberal feminists hope to eradicate all barriers to gender equality, claiming that the continued existence of such barriers eviscerates the individual rights and freedoms ostensibly guaranteed by a liberal social order. They argue that society holds the false belief that women are by nature Gender inequality, less intellectually and physically capable than men; thus it tends to Sexism, discriminate against women in the Sexism in academia, academy, the forum and the Occupational sexism, marketplace. Liberal feminists believe that "female subordination is rooted in a set of customary and legal constraints that blocks women's entrance to and success in the so-called public world". They strive for sexual equality via political and legal reform.Tong, Rosemarie. 1989. Feminist Thought: A Comprehensive Introduction. Oxon, United Kingdom: Unwin Human Ltd. Chapter 1 British List of women philosophers, philosopher Mary Wollstonecraft (1759–1797) is widely regarded as the pioneer of liberal feminism, with ''A Vindication of the Rights of Woman'' (1792) expanding the boundaries of liberalism to include women in the political structure of liberal society. In her writings such as ''A Vindication of the Rights of Woman'', Wollstonecraft commented on society's view of the woman and encouraged women to use their voices in making decisions separate from decisions previously made for them. Wollstonecraft "denied that women are, by nature, more pleasure seeking and pleasure giving than men. She reasoned that if they were confined to the same cages that trap women, men would develop the same flawed characters. What Wollstonecraft most wanted for women was personhood".
John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), also cited as J. S. Mill, was an English philosopher, Political economy, political economist, Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), Member of Parliament (MP) and civil servant. One of the most i ...
was also an early proponent of feminism. In his article ''The Subjection of Women'' (1861, published 1869), Mill attempted to prove that the legal subjugation of women is wrong and that it should give way to perfect equality. He believed that both sexes should have equal rights under the law and that "until conditions of equality exist, no one can possibly assess the natural differences between women and men, distorted as they have been. What is natural to the two sexes can only be found out by allowing both to develop and use their faculties freely". Mill frequently spoke of this imbalance and wondered if women were able to feel the same "genuine unselfishness" that men did in providing for their families. This unselfishness Mill advocated is the one "that motivates people to take into account the good of society as well as the good of the individual person or small family unit". Similar to Mary Wollstonecraft, Mill compared sexual inequality to slavery, arguing that their husbands are often just as abusive as masters and that a human being controls nearly every aspect of life for another human being. In his book ''The Subjection of Women'', Mill argues that three major parts of women's lives are hindering them: society and gender construction, education and marriage. Equity feminism is a form of liberal feminism discussed since the 1980s, specifically a kind of classically liberal or libertarian feminism. (revised 30 September 2013) Steven Pinker, an evolutionary psychologist, defines equity feminism as "a moral doctrine about equal treatment that makes no commitments regarding open empirical issues in psychology or biology". Barry Kuhle asserts that equity feminism is compatible with evolutionary psychology in contrast to Who Stole Feminism?, gender feminism.


Social liberal theory

Jean Charles Léonard Simonde de Sismondi's ''Nouveaux principes d'économie politique, ou de la richesse dans ses rapports avec la population'' (1819) represents the first comprehensive liberal critique of early capitalism and laissez-faire economics, and his writings, which were studied by
John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), also cited as J. S. Mill, was an English philosopher, Political economy, political economist, Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), Member of Parliament (MP) and civil servant. One of the most i ...
and Karl Marx among many others, had a profound influence on both liberal and socialist responses to the failures and contradictions of industrial society. By the end of the 19th century, the Classical liberalism#Evolution of core beliefs, principles of classical liberalism were being increasingly challenged by downturns in economic growth, a growing perception of the Diseases of poverty, evils of poverty, unemployment and relative deprivation present within modern industrial cities as well as the agitation of organised labour. The ideal of the Self-made man, self-made individual, who through hard work and talent could make his or her place in the world, seemed increasingly implausible. A major political reaction against the changes introduced by industrialisation and ''laissez-faire'' capitalism came from conservatives concerned about social balance, although
socialism Socialism is a political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relations between individuals, ...
later became a more important force for change and reform. Some Victorian literature, Victorian writers, including Charles Dickens, Thomas Carlyle and Matthew Arnold, became early influential critics of social injustice.Richardson, pp. 36–37. New liberals began to adapt the old language of liberalism to confront these difficult circumstances, which they believed could only be resolved through a broader and more interventionist conception of the state. An equal right to liberty could not be established merely by ensuring that individuals did not physically interfere with each other, or merely by having laws that were impartially formulated and applied. More positive and proactive measures were required to ensure that every individual would have an equal opportunity of success.
John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), also cited as J. S. Mill, was an English philosopher, Political economy, political economist, Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), Member of Parliament (MP) and civil servant. One of the most i ...
contributed enormously to liberal thought by combining elements of classical liberalism with what eventually became known as the new liberalism. Mill's 1859 ''
On Liberty ''On Liberty'' is a philosophical essay by the English philosopher John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), usually cited as J. S. Mill, was an List of British philosophers, English philosopher, Political economy, p ...
'' addressed the nature and limits of the Power (philosophy), power that can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual. He gave an impassioned defence of free speech, arguing that free discourse is a necessary condition for intellectual and social progress. Mill defined "social liberty" as protection from "the tyranny of political rulers". He introduced a number of different concepts of the form tyranny can take, referred to as social tyranny and tyranny of the majority, respectively. Social liberty meant limits on the ruler's power through obtaining recognition of political liberties or rights and by the establishment of a system of "constitutional checks". His definition of liberty, influenced by Joseph Priestley and Josiah Warren, was that the individual ought to be free to do as he wishes unless he harms others. However, although Mill's initial Philosophy and economics, economic philosophy supported free markets and argued that progressive taxation penalised those who worked harder, he later altered his views toward a more socialist bent, adding chapters to his ''Principles of Political Economy'' in defence of a socialist outlook and defending some socialist causes, including the radical proposal that the whole wage system be abolished in favour of a co-operative wage system. Another early liberal convert to greater government intervention was Thomas Hill Green. Seeing the effects of alcohol, he believed that the state should foster and protect the social, political and economic environments in which individuals will have the best chance of acting according to their consciences. The state should intervene only where there is a clear, proven and strong tendency of a liberty to enslave the individual. Green regarded the national state as legitimate only to the extent that it upholds a system of rights and obligations that is most likely to foster individual self-realisation. The New Liberalism or social liberalism movement emerged about 1900 in Britain. The New Liberals, which included intellectuals like L. T. Hobhouse and John A. Hobson, saw individual liberty as something achievable only under favorable social and economic circumstances. In their view, the poverty, squalor and ignorance in which many people lived made it impossible for freedom and individuality to flourish. New Liberals believed that these conditions could be ameliorated only through collective action coordinated by a strong, welfare-oriented and interventionist state. It supports a mixed economy that includes both public property, public and private property in capital goods.Stanislao G. Pugliese.
Carlo Rosselli: socialist heretic and antifascist exile
'. Harvard University Press, 1999. p. 99.
Noel W. Thompson. ''Political economy and the Labour Party: the economics of democratic socialism, 1884–2005''. 2nd edition. Oxon, England; New York, New York: Routledge, 2006. pp. 60–61. Principles that can be described as social liberal have been based upon or developed by philosophers such as John Stuart Mill, Eduard Bernstein, John Dewey, Carlo Rosselli, Norberto Bobbio and Chantal Mouffe. Other important social liberal figures include Guido Calogero, Piero Gobetti, Leonard Trelawny Hobhouse and R. H. Tawney.Steve Bastow, James Martin.
Third way discourse: European ideologies in the twentieth century
'. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK: Edinburgh University Press, Ltd, 2003. p. 72.
Liberal socialism has been particularly prominent in British and Italian politics.


Anarcho-capitalist theory

Classical liberalism advocates free trade under the rule of law. Anarcho-capitalism goes one step further, with law enforcement and the courts being provided by private companies. Various theorists have espoused legal philosophies similar to anarcho-capitalism. One of the first liberals to discuss the possibility of privatizing protection of individual liberty and property was France's Jakob Mauvillon in the 18th century. Later in the 1840s, Julius Faucher and Gustave de Molinari advocated the same. In his essay ''The Production of Security'', Molinari argued: "No government should have the right to prevent another government from going into competition with it, or to require consumers of security to come exclusively to it for this commodity". Molinari and this new type of anti-state liberal grounded their reasoning on liberal ideals and classical economics. Historian and libertarian Ralph Raico argues that what these liberal philosophers "had come up with was a form of individualist anarchism, or, as it would be called today, anarcho-capitalism or market anarchism". Unlike the liberalism of Locke, which saw the state as evolving from society, the anti-state liberals saw a fundamental conflict between the voluntary interactions of people, i.e. society; and the institutions of force, i.e. the state. This society versus state idea was expressed in various ways: natural society vs. artificial society, liberty vs. authority, society of contract vs. society of authority and industrial society vs. militant society, just to name a few.Molinari, Gustave de (1849
The Production of Security
(trans. J. Huston McCulloch). Retrieved 15 July 2006.
The anti-state liberal tradition in Europe and the United States continued after Molinari in the early writings of Herbert Spencer as well as in thinkers such as Paul Émile de Puydt and Auberon Herbert. However, the first person to use the term anarcho-capitalism was Murray Rothbard, who in the mid-20th century synthesized elements from the Austrian School of economics, classical liberalism and 19th-century American individualist anarchists Lysander Spooner and Benjamin Tucker (while rejecting their labor theory of value and the norms they derived from it). Anarcho-capitalism advocates the elimination of the state in favor of individual sovereignty,
private property Private property is a legal designation for the ownership of property Property is a system of rights that gives people legal control of valuable things, and also refers to the valuable things themselves. Depending on the nature of the prope ...
and free markets. Anarcho-capitalists believe that in the absence of statute (law by decree or legislation), society would improve itself through the discipline of the free market (or what its proponents describe as a "voluntary society").Edward Stringham, ''Anarchy and the law: the political economy of choice,'
p. 51
In a theoretical anarcho-capitalist society, law enforcement, courts and all other security services would be operated by privately funded competitors rather than centrally through taxation. Money, along with all other goods and services, would be privately and competitively provided in an open market. Anarcho-capitalists say personal and economic activities under anarcho-capitalism would be regulated by victim-based dispute resolution organizations under tort and contract law, rather than by statute through centrally determined punishment under what they describe as "political monopolies"."Review of Kosanke's Instead of Politics – Don Stacy"
Libertarian Papers VOL. 3, ART. NO. 3 (2011)
A Rothbardian anarcho-capitalist society would operate under a mutually agreed-upon libertarian "legal code which would be generally accepted, and which the courts would pledge themselves to follow". This pact would recognize self-ownership and the non-aggression principle (NAP), although methods of enforcement vary.


History

Isolated strands of liberal thought had existed in Western philosophy since the Ancient Greeks and in Eastern philosophy since the Song dynasty, Song and Ming dynasty, Ming period. These ideas were first drawn together and systematized as a distinct ideology, by the English philosopher
John Locke John Locke (; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704) was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment Enlightenment, enlighten or enlightened may refer to: Age of Enlightenment * ...

John Locke
, generally regarded as the father of modern liberalism. The first major signs of liberal politics emerged in modern times. These ideas began to coalesce at the time of the English Civil Wars. The Levellers, a radical political movement, during the war called for Freedom of religion in the United Kingdom, freedom of religion, frequent convening of parliament and equality under the law. The impact of these ideas steadily increased during the Early modern Britain, 17th century in England, culminating in the Glorious Revolution of 1688, which enshrined parliamentary sovereignty and the right of revolution and led to the establishment of what many consider the first modern, liberal state. The development of liberalism continued throughout the 18th century with the burgeoning Enlightenment ideals of the era. This was a period of profound intellectual vitality that questioned old traditions and influenced several Monarchies in Europe, European monarchies throughout the 18th century. Political tension between England and its Thirteen Colonies, American colonies grew after 1765 and the Seven Years' War over the issue of No taxation without representation, taxation without representation, culminating in the United States Declaration of Independence, Declaration of Independence of a new republic, and the resulting American Revolutionary War to defend it. After the war, the leaders debated about how to move forward. The Articles of Confederation, written in 1776, now appeared inadequate to provide security, or even a functional government. The United States in Congress Assembled, Confederation Congress called a Philadelphia Convention, Constitutional Convention in 1787, which resulted in the writing of a new Constitution of the United States establishing a Federation, federal government. In the context of the times, the Constitution was a republican and liberal document. It remains the oldest liberal governing document in effect worldwide. In Europe, liberalism has a long tradition dating back to the 17th century.German songs like ''Die Gedanken sind frei'' (''Thoughts Are Free'') can be dated even centuries before that. The French Revolution began in 1789. The two key events that marked the triumph of liberalism were the abolition of feudalism in France on the night of 4 August 1789, which marked the collapse of feudal and old traditional rights and privileges and restrictions as well as the passage of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen in August. During the Napoleonic Wars, the French brought to Western Europe the liquidation of the Feudalism, feudal system, the liberalization of property laws, the end of Manorialism, seigneurial dues, the abolition of guilds, the legalization of divorce, the disintegration of Jewish ghettos in Europe, Jewish ghettos, the collapse of the Spanish Inquisition, Inquisition, the final end of the Holy Roman Empire, the elimination of church courts and religious authority, the establishment of the metric system and equality under the law for all men. His most lasting achievement, the Napoleonic code, Civil Code, served as "an object of emulation all over the globe", but it also perpetuated further discrimination against women under the banner of the "natural order". The development into maturity of classical liberalism took place before and after the French Revolution in Britain.
Adam Smith Adam Smith ( 1723 – 17 July 1790) was a Scottish economist, philosopher as well as a moral philosopher Ethics or moral philosophy is a branch of philosophy that "involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and ...

Adam Smith
's ''The Wealth of Nations'', published in 1776, was to provide most of the ideas of economics at least until the publication of
John Stuart Mill John Stuart Mill (20 May 1806 – 7 May 1873), also cited as J. S. Mill, was an English philosopher, Political economy, political economist, Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), Member of Parliament (MP) and civil servant. One of the most i ...
's ''Principles'' in 1848. Smith addressed the motivation for economic activity, the causes of prices and the distribution of wealth and the policies the state should follow in order to maximise wealth. The radicalism (historical), radical liberal movement began in the 1790s in England and concentrated on parliamentary and electoral reform, emphasizing natural rights and popular sovereignty. Radicals like Richard Price and Joseph Priestley saw parliamentary reform as a first step toward dealing with their many grievances, including the treatment of English Dissenters, Protestant Dissenters, the slave trade, high prices and high taxes. In Liberalism and conservatism in Latin America, Latin America, liberal unrest dates back to the 18th century, when liberal agitation in Latin America led to Latin American wars of independence, independence from the imperial power of Spain and Portugal. The new regimes were generally liberal in their political outlook and employed the philosophy of positivism, which emphasized the truth of modern science, to buttress their positions. In the United States, a American Civil War, vicious war ensured the integrity of the nation and the abolition of slavery in the Southern United States, South. Historian Don Doyle has argued that the Union victory in the American Civil War (1861–1865) gave a major boost to the course of liberalism. During 19th and early 20th century in the Ottoman Empire and Middle East, liberalism influenced periods of reform such as the
Tanzimat The Tanzimat (; ota, تنظيمات, translit=Tanzimāt, lit=Reorganization, ''see'' nizām) was a period of reform Reform ( lat, reformo) means the improvement or amendment of what is wrong, corrupt, unsatisfactory, etc. The use of the word i ...
and
Al-Nahda The Nahda ( ar, النهضة, translit=an-nahḍa, meaning "the Awakening" or "the Renaissance The Renaissance ( , ) , from , with the same meanings. was a period in European history marking the transition from the Middle Ages ...
; the rise of secularism, constitutionalism and nationalism; and different intellectuals and religious group and movements, like the Young Ottomans and Islamic Modernism. Prominent of the era were Rifa'a al-Tahtawi, Namık Kemal and İbrahim Şinasi. However, the reformist ideas and trends did not reach the common population successfully as the books, periodicals and newspapers were accessible primarily to intellectuals and segments of an emerging middle class while many Muslims saw them as foreign influences on the Liberalism and progressivism in the Muslim world, world of Islam. That perception complicated reformist efforts made by Middle Eastern states. These changes, along with other factors, helped to create a sense of crisis within Islam, which continues to this day. This led to
Islamic revivalism Islamic revival ( ar, تجديد'' '', lit., "regeneration, renewal"; also ', "Islamic awakening") refers to a revival of the Islam Islam (;There are ten pronunciations of ''Islam'' in English, differing in whether the first or second sylla ...
. Abolitionism, Abolitionist and suffrage movements spread, along with representative and democratic ideals. France established an French Third Republic, enduring republic in the 1870s. However, nationalism also spread rapidly after 1815. A mixture of liberal and nationalist sentiment in Liberalism and radicalism in Italy, Italy and Germany brought about the unification of the two countries in the late 19th century. A liberal regime came to power in Italy and ended the secular power of the Popes. However, the Holy See, Vatican launched a counter crusade against liberalism. Pope Pius IX issued the ''Syllabus of Errors'' in 1864, condemning liberalism in all its forms. In many countries, liberal forces responded by Suppression of the Society of Jesus, expelling the Jesuit order. By the end of the nineteenth century, the principles of classical liberalism were being increasingly challenged and the ideal of the self-made individual seemed increasingly implausible. Victorian writers like Charles Dickens, Thomas Carlyle and Matthew Arnold were early influential critics of social injustice. Liberalism gained momentum in the beginning of the 20th century. The bastion of autocracy, the Nicholas II, Russian Tsar, was overthrown in the February Revolution, first phase of the Russian Revolution. The Allied victory in the First World War and the collapse of four empires seemed to mark the triumph of liberalism across the European continent, not just among the Allies of World War I, victorious allies, but also in Germany and the newly created states of Eastern Europe. Militarism, as typified by Germany, was defeated and discredited. As Blinkhorn argues, the liberal themes were ascendant in terms of "cultural pluralism, religious and ethnic toleration, national self-determination, free market economics, representative and responsible government, free trade, unionism, and the peaceful settlement of international disputes through a new body, the League of Nations". In the Middle East, liberalism led to constitutional periods, like the Ottoman First Constitutional Era (Ottoman Empire), First and Second Constitutional Era (Ottoman Empire), Second Constitutional Era and the Persian Constitutional Revolution, Persian constitutional period, but it declined in the late 1930s due to the growth and opposition of Islamism and Pan-Arabism, pan-Arab Arab nationalism, nationalism. However, there were various examples of intellectuals who advocated liberal values and ideas. Prominent liberals during the period were Taha Hussein, Ahmed Lutfi el-Sayed, Tawfiq al-Hakim, Abd El-Razzak El-Sanhuri and Muhammad Mandur. In the United States, Modern liberalism in the United States, modern liberalism traces its history to the popular presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt, who initiated the New Deal in response to the Great Depression in the United States, Great Depression and won an List of Presidents of the United States, unprecedented four elections. The New Deal coalition established by Roosevelt left a decisive legacy and influenced many future American presidents, including John F. Kennedy. Meanwhile, the definitive liberal response to the Great Depression was given by the British economist John Maynard Keynes, who had begun a theoretical work examining the relationship between unemployment, money and prices back in the 1920s. The worldwide Great Depression, starting in 1929, hastened the discrediting of liberal economics and strengthened calls for state control over economic affairs. Economic woes prompted widespread unrest in the European political world, leading to the rise of
fascism Fascism () is a form of far-right, authoritarian ultranationalism characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition, and strong regimentation of society and the economy that rose to prominence in early 20th-century Europ ...

fascism
as an ideology and a movement arrayed against both liberalism and
communism Communism (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Repu ...

communism
, especially in Nazi Germany and Kingdom of Italy, Italy. The rise of fascism in the 1930s eventually culminated in World War II, the deadliest conflict in human history. The Allies of World War II, Allies prevailed in the war by 1945 and their victory set the stage for the Cold War between the Communist state, Communist Eastern Bloc and the liberal Western Bloc. Liberalism in Iran, In Iran, liberalism enjoyed wide popularity. In April 1951, the National Front (Iran), National Front became the governing coalition when democratically elected Mohammad Mosaddegh, a liberal nationalist, took office as the Prime Minister of Iran, Prime Minister. However, his way of governing entered in conflict with Western interest and he was removed from power in a 1953 Iranian coup d'état, coup on 19 August 1953. The coup ended the dominance of liberalism in the country's politics. Among the various regional and national movements, the civil rights movement in the United States during the 1960s strongly highlighted the liberal efforts for Social equality, equal rights. The Great Society project launched by President of the United States, President Lyndon B. Johnson oversaw the creation of Medicare (United States), Medicare and Medicaid, the establishment of Head Start Program, Head Start and the Job Corps as part of the War on Poverty and the passage of the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964, an altogether rapid series of events that some historians have dubbed the "Liberal Hour". The Cold War featured extensive ideological competition and several proxy wars, but the widely feared World War III between the Soviet Union and the United States never occurred. While communist states and liberal democracies competed against one another, an 1973 oil crisis, economic crisis in the 1970s inspired a move away from Keynesian economics, especially under Margaret Thatcher in the United Kingdom and Ronald Reagan in the United States. This trend, known as neoliberalism, constituted a paradigm shift away from the post-war Keynesian consensus which had lasted from 1945 to 1980. Meanwhile, nearing the end of the 20th century, communist states in Eastern Europe Revolutions of 1989, collapsed precipitously, leaving liberal democracies as the only major forms of government in the West. At the beginning of World War II, the number of democracies around the world was about the same as it had been forty years before. After 1945, liberal democracies spread very quickly, but then retreated. In ''The Spirit of Democracy'', Larry Diamond argues that by 1974 "dictatorship, not democracy, was the way of the world" and that "barely a quarter of independent states chose their governments through competitive, free, and fair elections". Diamond goes on to say that democracy bounced back and by 1995 the world was "predominantly democratic".


Criticism and support

Liberalism has drawn both criticism and support in its history from various ideological groups. Less friendly to the goals of liberalism has been
conservatism Conservatism is an aesthetic Aesthetics, or esthetics (), is a branch of philosophy Philosophy (from , ) is the study of general and fundamental questions, such as those about reason, Metaphysics, existence, Epistemology, kno ...
. Edmund Burke, considered by some to be the first major proponent of modern conservative thought, offered a blistering critique of the French Revolution by assailing the liberal pretensions to the power of rationality and to the natural equality of all humans.Grigsby, p. 108. Some confusion remains about the relationship between social liberalism and
socialism Socialism is a political Politics (from , ) is the set of activities that are associated with Decision-making, making decisions in Social group, groups, or other forms of Power (social and political), power relations between individuals, ...
, despite the fact that many variants of socialism distinguish themselves markedly from liberalism by anti-capitalism, opposing capitalism, hierarchy and
private property Private property is a legal designation for the ownership of property Property is a system of rights that gives people legal control of valuable things, and also refers to the valuable things themselves. Depending on the nature of the prope ...
. Socialism formed as a group of related yet divergent ideologies in the 19th century such as Christian socialism,
communism Communism (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Repu ...

communism
(with the writings of Karl Marx) and social anarchism (with the writings of Mikhail Bakunin), the latter two influenced by the Paris Commune. These ideologies—as with liberalism and conservatism—fractured into several major and minor movements in the following decades. Marx rejected the foundational aspects of liberal theory, hoping to destroy both the state and the liberal distinction between society and the individual while fusing the two into a collective whole designed to overthrow the developing capitalist order of the 19th century. Today, socialist parties and ideas remain a political force with varying degrees of power and influence on all continents leading national governments in many countries. Vladimir Lenin stated that—in contrast with Marxism—liberal science defends wage slavery. However, some proponents of liberalism like George Henry Evans, Silvio Gesell and
Thomas Paine Thomas Paine (born Thomas Pain; – In the contemporary record as noted by Conway, Paine's birth date is given as January 29, 1736–37. Common practice was to use a dash or a slash to separate the old-style year from the new-style year. In the ...

Thomas Paine
were critics of wage slavery. One of the most outspoken critics of liberalism was the Roman Catholic Church, which resulted in lengthy power struggles between national governments and the Church. In the same vein, conservatives have also attacked what they perceive to be the reckless liberal pursuit of progress and material gains, arguing that such preoccupations undermine traditional social values rooted in community and continuity. However, a few variations of conservatism, like liberal conservatism, expound some of the same ideas and principles championed by classical liberalism, including "small government and thriving capitalism". Social democracy, an ideology advocating progressive modification of
capitalism Capitalism is an economic system An economic system, or economic order, is a system A system is a group of interacting Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects have an effect upon one another. The idea o ...

capitalism
, emerged in the 20th century and was influenced by socialism. Broadly defined as a project that aims to correct through government reformism what it regards as the intrinsic defects of capitalism by reducing inequalities, social democracy was also not against the state. Several commentators have noted strong similarities between social liberalism and social democracy, with one political scientist even calling American liberalism "bootleg social democracy" due to the absence of a significant social democratic tradition in the United States that liberals have tried to rectify. Another movement associated with modern democracy, Christian democracy, hopes to spread Catholic social teaching, Catholic social ideas and has gained a large following in some European nations. The early roots of Christian democracy developed as a reaction against the industrialisation and urbanisation associated with ''laissez-faire'' liberalism in the 19th century. Despite these complex relationships, some scholars have argued that liberalism actually "rejects ideological thinking" altogether, largely because such thinking could lead to unrealistic expectations for human society. Fascism and ideology#Liberalism, Fascists accuse liberalism of materialism and a lack of spiritual values.Marvin Perry, Myrna Chase, Margaret Jacob, James R. Jacob. ''Western Civilization: Ideas, Politics, and Society – From 1600, Volume 2''. 9th ed. Boston, Massaschussetts: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 2009 pp. 760. In particular, fascism opposes liberalism for its materialism, rationalism,
individualism Individualism is the Ethics, moral stance, political philosophy, ideology and social outlook that emphasizes the intrinsic worth of the individual. Individualists promote the exercise of one's goals and desires and to value independence and self ...
and utilitarianism.Sternhell, Zeev, Mario Sznajder and Maia Ashéri.
The Birth of Fascist Ideology: From Cultural Rebellion to Political Revolution
' (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1994) 7.
Fascists believe that the liberal emphasis on individual freedom produces national divisiveness, but many fascists agree with liberals in their support of private property rights and a
market economy A market economy is an economic system An economic system, or economic order, is a system A system is a group of interacting Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects have an effect upon one another. The ide ...
. Left-wing politics, Leftists accuse the economic doctrines of liberalism, such as economic individual freedom, of giving rise to what they view as a system of exploitation that goes against democratic principles of liberalism. Right-wing politics, Right-wingers accuse the social doctrines of liberalism, such as secularism and individual rights, of breaking down communities and dissolving the social fabric that they view a country needs to prosper. Scholars have praised the influence of liberal internationalism, claiming that the rise of globalisation "constitutes a triumph of the liberal vision that first appeared in the eighteenth century" while also writing that liberalism is "the only comprehensive and hopeful vision of world affairs". According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, as reported in the ''Financial Times'', "liberalism has become obsolete". He claims that the vast majority of people in the world oppose multiculturalism, immigration, and rights for people who are LGBT.


See also

* ''The American Prospect'', an American political magazine that backs social liberal policies * Constitutional liberalism * Friedrich Naumann Foundation, a global advocacy organisation that supports liberal ideas and policies * ''The Liberal'', a former British magazine dedicated to coverage of liberal politics and liberal culture * Liberalism by country * Muscular liberalism * Orange Book liberalism * Rule according to higher law


References

Notes


Bibliography and further reading

* Eric Alterman, Alterman, Eric. ''Why We're Liberals''. New York: Viking Adult, 2008. . * Ameringer, Charles. ''Political parties of the Americas, 1980s to 1990s''. Westport: Greenwood Publishing Group, 1992. . * Samir Amin, Amin, Samir. ''The liberal virus: permanent war and the americanization of the world''. New York: Monthly Review Press, 2004. * Antoninus, Marcus Aurelius. ''The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius Antoninus''. New York: Oxford University Press, 2008. . * Arnold, N. Scott. ''Imposing values: an essay on liberalism and regulation''. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009. . * Auerbach, Alan and Kotlikoff, Laurence. ''Macroeconomics'' Cambridge: MIT Press, 1998. . * Barzilai, Gad. ''Communities and Law: Politics and Cultures of Legal Identities'' University of Michigan Press, 2003. . * Bell, Duncan. "What is Liberalism?" ''Political Theory'', 42/6 (2014). * Brack, Duncan and Randall, Ed (eds.). ''Dictionary of Liberal Thought''. London: Politico's Publishing, 2007. . * George Brandis, Tom Harley & Donald Markwell (editors). ''Liberals Face the Future: Essays on Australian Liberalism'', Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1984. * Alan Bullock & Maurice Shock (editors). ''The Liberal Tradition: From Fox to Keynes'', Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1967. * Chodos, Robert et al. ''The unmaking of Canada: the hidden theme in Canadian history since 1945''. Halifax: James Lorimer & Company, 1991. . * Coker, Christopher. ''Twilight of the West''. Boulder: Westview Press, 1998. . * Delaney, Tim. ''The march of unreason: science, democracy, and the new fundamentalism''. New York: Oxford University Press, 2005. . * Diamond, Larry. ''The Spirit of Democracy''. New York: Macmillan, 2008. . * Dobson, John. ''Bulls, Bears, Boom, and Bust''. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, 2006. . * Dorrien, Gary. ''The making of American liberal theology''. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2001. . * Farr, Thomas. ''World of Faith and Freedom''. New York: Oxford University Press US, 2008. . * Fawcett, Edmund. ''Liberalism: The Life of an Idea''. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2014. . * Flamm, Michael and Steigerwald, David. ''Debating the 1960s: liberal, conservative, and radical perspectives''. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2008. . * Freeden, Michael, Javier Fernández-Sebastián, et al. ''In Search of European Liberalisms: Concepts, Languages, Ideologies'' (2019) * Gallagher, Michael et al. ''Representative government in modern Europe''. New York: McGraw Hill, 2001. . * Gifford, Rob. ''China Road: A Journey into the Future of a Rising Power''. Random House, 2008. . * Godwin, Kenneth et al. ''School choice tradeoffs: liberty, equity, and diversity''. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2002. . * Gould, Andrew. ''Origins of liberal dominance''. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1999. . * Gray, John. ''Liberalism''. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1995. . * Grigsby, Ellen. ''Analyzing Politics: An Introduction to Political Science''. Florence: Cengage Learning, 2008. . * Gross, Jonathan. ''Byron: the erotic liberal''. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2001. . * Hafner, Danica and Ramet, Sabrina. ''Democratic transition in Slovenia: value transformation, education, and media''. College Station: Texas A&M University Press, 2006. . * Handelsman, Michael. ''Culture and Customs of Ecuador''. Westport: Greenwood Press, 2000. . * Louis Hartz, Hartz, Louis. ''The liberal tradition in America''. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1955. . * * Hodge, Carl. ''Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1944''. Westport: Greenwood Publishing Group, 2008. . * Jensen, Pamela Grande. ''Finding a new feminism: rethinking the woman question for liberal democracy''. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 1996. . * Johnson, Paul. ''The Renaissance: A Short History''. New York: Modern Library, 2002. . * * Karatnycky, Adrian. ''Freedom in the World''. Piscataway: Transaction Publishers, 2000. . * Karatnycky, Adrian et al. ''Nations in transit, 2001''. Piscataway: Transaction Publishers, 2001. . * Kelly, Paul. ''Liberalism''. Cambridge: Polity Press, 2005. . * Kirchner, Emil. ''Liberal parties in Western Europe''. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988. . * Knoop, Todd. ''Recessions and Depressions'' Westport: Greenwood Press, 2004. . * Koerner, Kirk. ''Liberalism and its critics''. Oxford: Taylor & Francis, 1985. . * Lightfoot, Simon. ''Europeanizing social democracy?: The rise of the Party of European Socialists''. New York: Routledge, 2005. . * Domenico Losurdo, Losurdo, Domenico. ''Liberalism: a counter-history''. London: Verso, 2011. * Mackenzie, G. Calvin and Weisbrot, Robert. ''The liberal hour: Washington and the politics of change in the 1960s''. New York: Penguin Group, 2008. . * Manent, Pierre and Seigel, Jerrold. ''An Intellectual History of Liberalism''. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1996. . * Donald Markwell. ''John Maynard Keynes and International Relations: Economic Paths to War and Peace'', Oxford University Press, 2006. * Mazower, Mark. ''Dark Continent''. New York: Vintage Books, 1998. . * Monsma, Stephen and Soper, J. Christopher. ''The Challenge of Pluralism: Church and State in Five Democracies''. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2008. . * Robert Roswell Palmer, Palmer, R.R. and Joel Colton. ''A History of the Modern World''. New York: McGraw Hill, Inc., 1995. . * Perry, Marvin et al. ''Western Civilization: Ideas, Politics, and Society''. Florence, KY: Cengage Learning, 2008. . * Pierson, Paul. ''The New Politics of the Welfare State''. New York: Oxford University Press, 2001. . * Puddington, Arch. ''Freedom in the World: The Annual Survey of Political Rights and Civil Liberties''. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2007. . * Riff, Michael. ''Dictionary of modern political ideologies''. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1990. . * Rivlin, Alice. ''Reviving the American Dream'' Washington D.C.: Brookings Institution Press, 1992. . * Ros, Agustin. ''Profits for all?: the cost and benefits of employee ownership''. New York: Nova Publishers, 2001. . * Routledge, Paul et al. ''The geopolitics reader''. New York: Routledge, 2006. . * * Alan Ryan, Ryan, Alan. ''The Philosophy of John Stuart Mill''. Humanity Books: 1970. . * Alan Ryan, Ryan, Alan. ''The Making of Modern Liberalism'' (Princeton UP, 2012). * Alan Ryan, Ryan, Alan. ''On Politics: A History of Political Thought: From Herodotus to the Present''. Allen Lane, 2012. . * Shell, Jonathan. ''The Unconquerable World: Power, Nonviolence, and the Will of the People''. New York: Macmillan, 2004. . * Shaw, G. K. ''Keynesian Economics: The Permanent Revolution''. Aldershot, England: Edward Elgar Publishing Company, 1988. . * Sinclair, Timothy. ''Global governance: critical concepts in political science''. Oxford: Taylor & Francis, 2004. . * Song, Robert. ''Christianity and Liberal Society''. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006. . * Stacy, Lee. ''Mexico and the United States''. New York: Marshall Cavendish Corporation, 2002. . * Steindl, Frank. ''Understanding Economic Recovery in the 1930s''. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2004. . * Susser, Bernard. ''Political ideology in the modern world''. Upper Saddle River: Allyn and Bacon, 1995. . * . * Van den Berghe, Pierre. ''The Liberal dilemma in South Africa''. Oxford: Taylor & Francis, 1979. . * Van Schie, P. G. C. and Voermann, Gerrit. ''The dividing line between success and failure: a comparison of Liberalism in the Netherlands and Germany in the 19th and 20th Centuries''. Berlin: LIT Verlag Berlin-Hamburg-Münster, 2006. . * Venturelli, Shalini. ''Liberalizing the European media: politics, regulation, and the public sphere''. New York: Oxford University Press, 1998. . * Wallerstein, Immanuel. ''The Modern World-System IV: Centrist Liberalism trimphant 1789–1914''. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2011. * Whitfield, Stephen. ''Companion to twentieth-century America''. Hoboken: Wiley-Blackwell, 2004. . * Alan Wolfe, Wolfe, Alan. ''The Future of Liberalism''. New York: Random House, Inc., 2009. . * * Zvesper, John. ''Nature and liberty''. New York: Routledge, 1993. . :: Britain * Adams, Ian. ''Ideology and politics in Britain today''. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1998. . * Cook, Richard. ''The Grand Old Man''. Whitefish: Kessinger Publishing, 2004. on Gladstone. * Falco, Maria. ''Feminist interpretations of Mary Wollstonecraft''. State College: Penn State Press, 1996. . * Forster, Greg. ''John Locke's politics of moral consensus''. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005. . * Gross, Jonathan. ''Byron: the erotic liberal''. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc., 2001. . * Locke, John. ''wikisource:A Letter Concerning Toleration, A Letter Concerning Toleration''. 1689. * John Locke, Locke, John. ''Two Treatises of Government''. reprint, New York: Hafner Publishing Company, Inc., 1947. . * Wempe, Ben. ''T. H. Green's theory of positive freedom: from metaphysics to political theory''. Exeter: Imprint Academic, 2004. . :: France * Frey, Linda and Frey, Marsha. ''The French Revolution''. Westport: Greenwood Press, 2004. . * Hanson, Paul. ''Contesting the French Revolution''. Hoboken: Blackwell Publishing, 2009. . * Leroux, Robert, ''Political Economy and Liberalism in France: The Contributions of Frédéric Bastiat'', London and New York, Routledge, 2011. * Leroux, Robert, and David Hart (eds), ''French Liberalism in the 19th century. An Anthology'', London and New York, Routledge, 2012. * Lyons, Martyn. ''Napoleon Bonaparte and the Legacy of the French Revolution''. New York: St. Martin's Press, Inc., 1994. . * Shlapentokh, Dmitry. ''The French Revolution and the Russian Anti-Democratic Tradition''. Edison, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 1997. .


External links


Liberalism
— entry at ''
Encyclopædia Britannica The (Latin for "British Encyclopaedia") is a general knowledge English-language encyclopaedia which is now published exclusively as an online encyclopedia, online encyclopaedia. It was formerly published by Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., ...
'' * *
"Liberalism/Antiliberalism"
A critical survey.

{{authority control Liberalism, Egalitarianism History of political thought Human rights concepts Individualism Political culture Political science terminology Secularism Social theories