On Liberty / Edition 1

On Liberty / Edition 1

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Prometheus Books
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On Liberty / Edition 1

In the rich history of political philosophy, great minds have sought to define the nature and extent of human freedom, with careful justifications offered for the principles proposed. This tradition experienced a heightened degree of enthusiastic intensity upon the publication of On Liberty in England during the nineteenth century.

In this, his most powerful essay, John Stuart Mill defends individual liberty against both social and political encroachment, by daring to suggest that lines of demarcation be drawn to outline the proper role of government with respect to individual freedom. Apropriate spheres of action are offered for individuals, society, and the state; basic rules are established to deal with those cases in which human action may need to be restrained or limited.

Mill's eloquence and his unwavering dedication to the cause of freedom permeate every page.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780879753368
Publisher: Prometheus Books
Publication date: 04/28/1986
Series: Great Books in Philosophy
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 129
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.35(h) x 0.30(d)

Table of Contents

On Liberty21
Chapter 1Introductory23
Chapter 2Of the Liberty of Thought and Discussion41
Chapter 3Of Individuality, as One of the Elements of Well-Being87
Chapter 4Of the Limits to the Authority of Society over the Individual111
Chapter 5Applications135
Study Guide171
About Steven M. Cahn and C. L. Ten179

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On Liberty (Barnes & Noble Library of Essential Reading) 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
In an attempt to examine individual freedoms, John Stuart Mill provides his utilitarian idea of a strong protection of rights in On Liberty. Mill outlines what he considers to be the major influencing factors that determine societies¿ power and individual rights, and produces what he considers to be the most significant development in his discussion: his belief that man should have ultimate sovereignty on his own decisions as long as they do not harm anyone else. With this ¿harm principle¿ in mind, Mill discloses three individual liberties that are of grave importance: freedom of thought/opinion/speech, freedom of action and freedom to unite. He provides an overview of his perspectives on the right to these personal freedoms and the burden of societal and governmental restriction upon these freedoms. Mill also recognizes that the only appropriate application of societal or governmental power should be in order to protect, and that outside of the function of providing a means for self-protection for each individual, society as a whole should not impose power that influences man's capacity for free choice. In summary, I believe this particular essay by Mill to be a crucial link in the development of individual freedoms. On Liberty, to me, is an endeavor to illustrate the ideas and theories of a man ahead of history, which brings about a series of important ideas and thoughts that outline what individual freedoms truly are.
Guest More than 1 year ago
John Mill has challenged us to reach the bounds of Liberty in our every action and deed. Concepts of Freedom and Liberty come to life in his essay which challenges not only his contemporary society but all societies to come. It is interesting to note his comments about current society and governments being capable of addressing this issue. There are still many governments in this 21st century world who do not subscribe to the philosophy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had to read this book for my Honors Compostition class at North Dakota State Univ. The book is definitely a slow read, make sure you have lots of time to read it (you'll probably find yourself re-reading large chunks of it). Mill's viewpoint is definitely extreme, from my point of view. He writes from a very liberal point of view, and suggests allowing no restrictions on human liberty except when another person would be endangered. Several of his arguments seem week and he adds very strange exceptions to his ideas. The book is interesting, but not a must read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
John Stuart Mill has a grasp on Liberty and a fearlessness in communicating it that is unmatched. I read some of the reviews on here, such as from that "composition teacher" who calls John's agruements "week" and was depressed that people miss the points here. Liberty for all, one day I hope all people understand Liberty as John did.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
All Americans need to read this!
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hates_sunlight More than 1 year ago
The text is really garbled. The proofreaders should be fired and blacklisted.