Once he entered the intellectual fray, things would never be the same.
Jeremy Bentham was born on Feb. 15th, 1748, in Spitalfields, England. One of the main early advocates of utilitarianism — the ethical view that, roughly, an act is right insofar as it promotes happiness, and wrong insofar as it does not — he is best known for his view that “it is the greatest happiness […]
Kant was self-consciously an Enlightenment liberal who believed in limited government and maximum freedom.
Westworld is first and foremost a depiction of the corrosive nature of total power — an illustration of Lord Acton’s quote that “absolute power corrupts absolutely” — as seen through the character of Dr. Robert Ford.
So 2016 is limping to an end with an assassination of an ambassador, another “inspired” attack on innocents at a Christmas market, and the formal election of a master crony-capitalist to the office of the presidency of the United States.
There are books that every libertarian should read and books every libertarian has read, but those circles don’t perfectly overlap. Here are 13 diverse book recommendations for well-rounded thinkers.
Personhood is a moral concept, related to the notion of individuality.
While the singing Christmas turds of seasons past will always be funny, it is South Park’s growing, full-throated defense of liberal values like free expression, privacy, anti-authoritarianism, and individualism that will forge its larger legacy.
The value of liberal arts fields lies not in their specific application but in the way they inculcate a set of problem-solving tools. That corporate recruiters consistently report a preference for liberal arts majors over majors in “practical” fields is testimony to the reading, writing, and analytic skills students develop in those programs.
Would you tell a lie to protect someone from harm?
Here are seven criminally underrated philosophers to celebrate this World Philosophy Day.
Why should students read big, difficult books if they have perfectly good summaries available to them?
Truly virtuous behavior cannot be compelled. Demonstrating virtue and consequently inspiring people to be virtuous is a fundamental and necessary component of a free society.
What’s the appropriate balance between the rights of animals and the comfort and quality of life of humans?
To answer this question we must first learn the distinction between contemporary conceptions of freedom and “The Freedom of the Ancients.”
On the Fourth of July, we are celebrating 240 years of American independence. In light of that anniversary, we should take a few moments and reflect on the meaning of that day and the idea of America. The idea of America was a consensus around the belief in individual liberty and a government by the […]
John Stuart Mill was born exactly 210 years ago (May 21, 1806), and he’s still remembered as one of the most foundational classical liberal philosophers and political economists to this day. If you’ve studied Mill at all in your college classes, you probably remember him for his development of utilitarian thought—the idea that anything we […]
What are thought experiments? They are the consideration of particular—usually practical—issues that encompass broader, philosophical ideas. For example, the practical decision about whether to keep our dog in a crate or loose in the backyard can be viewed as a thought experiment about the nature of life and the trade-offs between freedom and danger and […]
Liberty lovers have another bracket to fill out and obsess over this March. The Institute for Humane Studies is hosting its own version of March Madness, featuring the top thinkers of the liberty movement. The competitors represent four quadrants of liberty thought: Nobel Prize winners, classical thinkers, Austrian Economists, and radical thinkers. Vote for your […]
Many a political commentator will make the argument that something is a right. But have you ever seriously considered what constitutes a right? This is an important philosophical, as well as political and economic question we must ask ourselves when determining the proper role of government in a free society. In this Learn Liberty video […]
If you’re interested in Ayn Rand’s writing and will be attending the International Students for Liberty Conference, come a day early and learn about Ayn Rand’s unique and integrated moral-philosophical argument and its connection to a free society. The seminar will examine three of her essays, “The Objectivist Ethics,” “Man’s Rights,” and “What Is Capitalism” […]
Join our professors Peter Jaworski, Howard Baetjer, and Matt Zwolinski as they take you into a world of thought experiments that will literally blow your mind as they expand your normal cognitive processes and your worldview. Then take on the thought-provoking questions after each video. Trust us, after completing this course nothing but nothing will […]
From gaining the rights to vote and to own property to contemporary issues like wage gaps and slut shaming, feminism has been a topic of debate for decades. Some argue that the best way to give women equal rights and opportunities is to enact government policies which mandate the equal treatment of women, or affirmative […]
Looking to learn more about Austrian economics, libertarianism, or classical liberal thought? The Mises Institute (named for famed Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, author of Human Action) offers a huge online library of books, journal articles, and other writings on a range of topics related to Austrian economics and classical liberalism. Here are just a […]