Political Thought in England from Locke to Bentham

Political Thought in England from Locke to Bentham

by Harold J. Laski


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9789353290344
Publisher: Alpha Editions
Publication date: 10/24/2018
Pages: 156
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.36(d)

About the Author

Harold Joseph Laski (30 June 1893 - 24 March 1950) was a British Marxist, political theorist, economist, author, and lecturer, who served as the chairman of the Labour Party during 1945-1946, and was a professor at the London School of Economics from 1926 to 1950.
Laski was a proponent of Marxism and believed in a planned economy based on the public ownership of the means of production. Instead of as he saw it, a coercive state, Laski believed in the evolution of co-operative states that were internationally bound and stressed social welfare. He also believed since the capitalist class would not acquiesce in its own liquidation, the cooperative commonwealth was not likely to be attained without violence. But he also had a commitment to civil liberties, free speech and association, and representative democracy. Initially he believed that the League of Nations would bring about a "international democratic system". However from the late 1920s his political beliefs became radicalized and he believed that it was necessary to go beyond capitalism to "transcend the existing system of sovereign states". Laski was dismayed by the Hitler-Stalin pact and wrote a preface to the Left Book Club collection criticising it, Betrayal of the Left. In his last years he was disillusioned by the Cold War and the communist takeover of Czechoslovakia. George Orwell described him as "A socialist by allegiance, and a liberal by temperament".

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