Political Thought

  • In Defense of Freedom and Related Essays

    by Frank S. Meyer

    When it first appeared in 1962, In Defense of Freedom was hailed by Richard M. Weaver as “a brilliant defense of the primacy of the person” and an effective “indictment of statism and bureaucratism.” Meyer examines the tension between the freedom of the person and the power of social institutions. In his view, both the dominant Liberalism and the “New…

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  • In Defense of the Constitution

    by George W. Carey

    In Defense of the Constitution argues that modern disciples of Progressivism who subtly distort fundamental principles of the Constitution are determined to centralize political control in Washington, D.C., to achieve their goal of an egalitarian national society. It is in their distrust of self-government and representative institutions that Progressivists advocate, albeit indirectly, an elitist regime based on the power of…

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  • In Pursuit: Of Happiness and Good Government

    by Charles Murray

    Respected author, scholar, and columnist Charles Murray has long challenged accepted notions of public and social policy issues. In this volume, originally published in 1988, Murray presents a persuasive and practical argument that reconsiders commonly held beliefs of what constitutes success in social policy by examining the scope of government and its role in people’s pursuit of happiness. In Pursuit:

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  • John Randolph of Roanoke

    by Russell Kirk

    John Randolph of Roanoke is unique in American political history. For most of his public career Randolph was a leader of the opposition—to both Jeffersonians and Federalists. Only twenty-six when first elected to Congress in 1799, he readily became the most forceful figure at the Capitol. He was, writes Russell Kirk, “devoted to state rights, the agricultural interest, economy in…

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  • Leisure the Basis of Culture

    by Josef Pieper

    This elegantly written work introduces the reader to an understanding that leisure is nothing less than “an attitude of mind and a condition of the soul that fosters a capacity to perceive the reality of the world.” Pieper demonstrates that “Leisure has been, and always will be, the first foundation of any culture,” and observes, “in our bourgeois Western world…

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  • A Letter Concerning Toleration and Other Writings

    by John Locke

    This volume opens with Locke’s Letter Concerning Toleration (1689) and also contains his earlier Essay Concerning Toleration (1667), extracts from the Third Letter for Toleration (1692), and a large body of his briefer essays and memoranda on this theme. As editor Mark Goldie writes in the introduction, A Letter Concerning Toleration “was one of the seventeenth century’s most eloquent pleas…

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  • Select Works of Edmund Burke: Letters on a Regicide Peace

    by Edmund Burke

    This famed Payne edition of Select Works of Edmund Burke is universally revered by students of English history and political thought. Volume 3 presents Burke’s Four Letters on the Proposals for Peace with the Regicide Directory of France—generally styled Letters on a Regicide Peace (1795–1796). The Letters, Payne believed, deserve to “rank even before [Burke’s] Reflections, and to be called…

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  • Liberty and American Experience in the Eighteenth Century

    by David Womersley

    Liberty and American Experience in the Eighteenth Century presents ten new essays on central themes of the American Founding period by some of today’s preeminent scholars of American history. The writers explore various aspects of the zeitgeist, among them Burke’s theories on property rights and government, the relations between religious and legal understandings of liberty, the significance of Protestant beliefs…

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  • Liberty in Mexico

    by José Antonio Aguilar Rivera

    Liberty in Mexico presents sixty-four essays and writings on liberty and liberalism, from the early republican period to the late twentieth century, from a variety of authors. The texts in this edition will refute commonly held notions that the liberal project in Latin America had no indigenous roots. The institutions of modern representative government and free-market capitalism were very much…

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  • Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

    by James Fitzjames Stephen

    Students of political theory will welcome the return to print of this brilliant defense of ordered liberty. Impugning John Stuart Mill’s famous treatise, On Liberty, Stephen criticized Mill for turning abstract doctrines of the French Revolution into “the creed of a religion.” Only the constraints of morality and law make liberty possible, warned Stephen, and attempts to impose unlimited freedom,…

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  • Liberty, Order, and Justice

    by James McClellan

    Unlike most textbooks in American Government, Liberty, Order, and Justice seeks to familiarize the student with the basic principles of the Constitution, and to explain their origin, meaning, and purpose. Particular emphasis is placed on federalism and the separation of powers. These features of the book, together with its extensive and unique historical illustrations, make this edition of Liberty, Order,

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  • The Limits of State Action

    by Wilhelm von Humboldt

    The Limits of State Action has an exuberance and attention to principle that make it a valuable introduction to classical liberal political thought. It is also crucial for an understanding of liberalism as it developed in Europe at the turn of the nineteenth century. Humboldt explores the role that liberty plays in individual development, discusses criteria for permitting the state…

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