The Online Library of Liberty

The aim of the OLL is to provide thousands of titles about individual liberty, limited constitutional government, and the free market, free of charge to the public, for educational purposes.

The Online Library of Liberty makes available at no charge to the public outstanding resources for teaching & learning about individual liberty. It has won a number of international awards and recognition from such bodies as the Library of Congress (we were selected for the Minerva Archiving Project), the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the British Arts & Humanities Research Council.

The works of hundreds of authors from ancient Sumeria to the present are represented. They are organized by author, historical period, and schools of thought. The latter includes the French Enlightenment, the Founding Fathers, 19th century natural rights theorists, the Austrian School of Economics, and many others.

Liberty Matters

Every two months the OLL hosts an online forum for scholars to discuss the significance of some of the key works in the OLL collection. A lead article on the topic is posted, which is followed by three or more response essays and then open debate. Topics covered so far include Eric Mack on “John Locke on Property,” Geoffrey Brennan on “James Buchanan: An Assessment,” and Roderick Long on “Gustave de Molinari’s Legacy for Liberty.”

Visit the Online Library of Liberty

Recent Posts

Here are the 10 latest posts from OLL.

OLL November 7, 2017

Early Economic Thought in Spain, 1177-1740 (Marjorie Grice-Hutchinson)

Early Economic Thought in Spain, 1177-1740 (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2015).

OLL November 6, 2017

In Pursuit: Of Happiness and Good Government (Charles Murray)

In Pursuit: Of Happiness and Good Government (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2013).

OLL October 18, 2017

Democracy in America. English Edition. Vol. 2. (Alexis de Tocqueville)

Democracy in America. English Edition. Edited by Eduardo Nolla. Translated from the French by James T. Schleifer. (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2012). Vol. 2.

OLL October 18, 2017

Democracy in America. English Edition. Vol. 1 (Alexis de Tocqueville)

Democracy in America. English Edition. Edited by Eduardo Nolla. Translated from the French by James T. Schleifer. (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2012). Vol. 1.

OLL October 18, 2017

Tocqueville’s Voyages: The Evolution of His Ideas and Their Journey Beyond His Time (Christine Dunn Henderson)

HendersonVoyagesTocqueville’s Voyages: The Evolution of His Ideas and Their Journey Beyond His Time. Edited and with an introduction by Christine Dunn Henderson (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2014).

OLL September 22, 2017

David M. Hart, “Classical Liberalism and the Problem of Class” (Nov. 2016) (David M. Hart)

Liberty Matters: Classical Liberalism and the Problem of Class (Nov. 2016) (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2016).

OLL September 12, 2017

Encyclopedic Liberty: Political Articles in the Dictionary of Diderot and D’Alembert (Denis Diderot)

Encyclopedic Liberty: Political Articles in the Dictionary of Diderot and D’Alembert. By Denis Diderot and Jean Le Rond d’Alembert. Edited and with an Introduction by Henry C. Clark. Translated by Henry C. Clark and Christine Dunn Henderson (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2016).

OLL July 14, 2017

The Collected Works of Frédéric Bastiat. Vol. 3: Economic Sophisms and “What is Seen and What is Not Seen” (Frédéric Bastiat)

The Collected Works of Frédéric Bastiat. Vol. 3: Economic Sophisms and “What is Seen and What is Not Seen.” Jacques de Guenin, General Editor. Translated from the French by Jane and Michel Willems, with a foreword by Robert McTeer, and an introduction and appendices by the Academic Editor David M. Hart. Annotations and Glossaries by Jacques de Guenin, Jean-Claude Paul-Dejean, and David M. Hart. Translation Editor Dennis O’Keeffe. (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2017).

OLL April 18, 2017

Liberty Matters: Israel M. Kirzner and the Entrepreneurial Market Process (March 2017) (Peter J. Boettke)

Liberty Matters: Israel M. Kirzner and the Entrepreneurial Market Process (March 2017) (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2017).

OLL January 5, 2017

BOLL 74: John Millar, "Circumstances which tend to increase the power of the Sovereign" (1771) (John Millar)

The Best of the OLL No. 74: John Millar, “Circumstances which tend to increase the power of the Sovereign” (1771) (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2017).

Here are the 10 latest posts from OLL | Liberty Matters.

OLL | Liberty Matters November 1, 2017

Peter Boettke, "Gordon Tullock and the Rational Choice Commitment" (November, 2017)

Liberty MattersThis month's discussion looks at the work of the political economist Gordon Tullock who saw himself very much in the tradition of Mises – a praxeologist who from a methodologically individualistic perspective would study human action across all social arrangements.  Tullock's subject matter was humanity in all settings, and that included not just markets, but non-market settings such as law, politics, and charity.  Along the way he made fundamental contributions to the theory of bureaucracy, constitutional construction, judicial decision-making, voting behavior, lobbying, scientific organization, redistribution, and even sociobiology. The Lead Essay is by Peter J. Boettke, University Professor of Economics and Philosophy at George Mason University, and he is joined by Peter Kurril-Klitgard, Professor of Political Theory and Comparative Politics at the Dept. of Political Science of the University of Copenhagen, David M. Levy, Professor of Economics at George Mason University, and Michael Munger, director of the PPE Program at Duke University and professor of political science, economics, and public policy.

See the Archive of "Liberty Matters".

OLL | Liberty Matters September 2, 2017

Peter Boettke, "Hayek's Epistemic Liberalism" (September, 2017)

Liberty MattersPeter J. Boettke, Professor of Economics and Philosophy at George Mason University, argues that is a common trope to claim that F. A. Hayek experienced a crushing defeat in technical economics during the 1930s.  At the beginning of the decade, Hayek emerged in the British scientific community as a leading economic theorist. Yet by the end of the decade Hayek was supposedly defeated in his debate both with Keynes and with Oskar Lange and Abba Lerner over market socialism. However, this narrative reflects a fundamental misunderstanding of the teachings of economics from the classical to the early neoclassical economists.  Economic life from Adam Smith to J. S. Mill never was treated as taking place in an institutional vacuum.  Instead, law, politics, and social mores all constituted the institutional background against which economic life played out. As Boettke argues in the Lead Essay, Hayek’s epistemic institutionalism, as articulated in the 1930s and 1940s, provided the foundation for his own reconstruction and restatement of liberal political economy as evidenced in The Constitution of Liberty (1960) and Law, Legislation and Liberty (1973-79). Recognizing this aspect of Hayek’s thought is a first step to recognizing his broader contributions to economic science and the art of political economy. Boettke is joined in this discussion by Steven Horwitz, the John H. Schnatter Distinguished Professor of Free Enterprise in the department of economics at Ball State University, Roger Koppl, professor of finance in the Whitman School of Management of Syracuse University, and Adam Martin is a Political Economy Research Fellow at the Free Market Institute and an assistant professor in the department of Agricultural and Applied Economics at Texas Tech University.

OLL | Liberty Matters July 5, 2017

Matt Zwolinski, "William Graham Sumner – Liberty's Forgotten Man" (July 2017)

Liberty Matters History has not been kind to the legacy of William Graham Sumner. In his time (1840-1910), Sumner was one of the most prestigious and widely read libertarian intellectuals in the United States. Beyond his more technical academic work Sumner also wrote passionately and voluminously in defense of laissez faireon a wide range of social issues. His popular critique of protectionism, "The –ism Which Teaches that Waste Makes Wealth" (1885) and his denunciation of imperialism in "The Conquest of the United States by Spain" (1898) are two of his most impressive polemical works. Sumner's most sustained investigation of questions of economic policy and distributive justice appeared in a collection essays What Social Classes Owe to Each Other (1883) which includes his most famous single essay – "The Forgotten Man" (1884). Unfortunately, Sumner's intellectual legacy suffered essentially the same fate as that of his contemporary Herbert Spencer, and for much the same reason. From near-ubiquity and respectability, Sumner's ideas have descended into obscurity and disrepute. To the extent he is remembered at all today, it is mostly for his alleged "social Darwinism." In this essayMatt Zwolinski, professor of philosophy at the University of San Diego, examines the charge of social Darwinism, and, more generally, the nature of Sumner's views on redistribution and our responsibilities toward the poor and vulnerable, and concludes that the charge of social Darwinism is mistaken as applied to Sumner, whi is a principled libertarian, not a social Darwinist. Moreover, he is a libertarian who took special pains to demonstrate the ways in which a regime of liberty is especially beneficial to society's most vulnerable members. Matt is joined in the dicussion by Phillip W. Magness, a historian based in the Washington, D.C. region, Robert Leroux, professor of sociology at the University of Ottawa, and Fabio Rojas, professor of sociology at Indiana University.

See the Archive of "Liberty Matters".

OLL | Liberty Matters May 18, 2017

George H. Smith, "The System of Liberty" (September 2013)

This is a discussion of George H. Smith’s new book The System of Liberty: Themes in the History of Classical Liberalism published by Cambridge University Press (2013). Smith describes how he came to write the book, the works of the history of political thought which inspired him (in particular the writings of the German legal historian Otto von Gierke), and the methodology he uses in approaching the history of ideas (Locke’s idea of “the presumption of coherence”). He demonstrates his approach with a brief discussion of one of the key ideas he has identified in the history of classical liberal thought, namley, the idea of “inalienable rights,” or to phrase it in the terminology of 17th century natural rights philosophers like Pufendorf, the distinction between “perfect and imperfect rights.” His essay is discussed by Jason Brennan, assistant professor of strategy, economics, ethics, and public policy at Georgetown University; David Gordon, Senior Fellow at the Ludwig von Mises Institute; and Ralph Raico, Professor Emeritus of History at the Buffalo State College.

See the Archive of "Liberty Matters".

OLL | Liberty Matters May 17, 2017

Stephen Davies, "Richard Cobden: Ideas and Strategies in Organizing the Free-Trade Movement in  Britain" (January 2015)

Today it is easy to be despondent about the prospects of bringing about radical change in public policy or the political and social order. Policies that are widely recognized to be foolish and self-defeating (such as the “war on drugs”) seem to be immoveable.  There are a plethora of analyses of faults in policy or in political institutions, but most of these lack the crucial ingredient of a plausible way of getting from A to B, from where we are now to somewhere better. However, history gives us a number of counterexamples that should lead us to think more carefully about how to understand both the need for certain kinds of political change and the ways of achieving this. One of the most striking of these counterexamples is the career of Richard Cobden and in particular the way that he pioneered forms of advocacy and organization in the Anti-Corn Law League in the late 1830s and early 1840s that were highly effective in his own time, had long-lasting effects, and are still relevant today. The Lead Essay has been written by Steve Davies who is education director at the Institute of Economic Affairs in London. The commentators are Gordon Bannerman who is a freelance writer and researcher, Professor Anthony Howe who is professor of modern history at the University of East Anglia, and Sarah Richardson who is associate professor of history at the University of Warwick.

See the Archive of "Liberty Matters".

OLL | Liberty Matters May 1, 2017

Nicholas Buccola, “Frederick Douglass on the Right and Duty to Resist” (May, 2017)

Nicolas Buccola, a professor of political Science at Linfield College, discusses the moral problem Frederick Douglass raised in the 1850s about the justice of using violence to resist the evil of slavery. Douglass was radicalized both by his own experience of being a slave and using violence against a notorious “slave breaker,” as well as by the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 and how to oppose the state-sanctioned policy of kidnapping runaway slaves and returning them to their “owners.” Buccola points to a number of troubling aspects about Douglass “robust conception of duty to vindicate the natural rights” of slaves, especially as it relates to the present time. He is joined in the discussion by Helen J. Knowles is an assistant professor of political science at the State University of New York at Oswego, Peter C. Myers Professor of Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, and the independent scholar George H. Smith.

OLL | Liberty Matters April 1, 2017

Peter J. Boettke, "Israel M. Kirzner on Competitive Behavior, Industrial Structure, and the Entrepreneurial Market Process" (March, 2017)

In this Liberty Matters online discussion Peter Boettke of George Mason University examines Israel Kirzner’s insights into the rivalrous nature of competitive behavior and the market process, his analysis of market theory and the operation of the price system, the institutional environment that enables a market economy to realize mutual gains from trade and to continuously discover gains from innovation, and to produce a system characterized by economic growth and wealth creation. Boettke concludes by arguing that Kirzner has done more than nearly any other living modern economist to improve our understanding of competitive behavior and the operation of the price system in a market economy. Boettke is joined in the discussion by Peter G. Klein, professor of entrepreneurship at Baylor University’s Hankamer School of Business, Mario Rizzo, professor of economics at New York University, and Frédéric Sautet, associate professor at The Catholic University of America. Boettke and Sautet are the editors of Liberty Fund’s 10 volume The Collected Works of Israel M. Kirzner.

OLL | Liberty Matters February 14, 2017

Knud Haakonssen, "Pufendorf on Power and Liberty" (January, 2017)

Knud Haakonssen, of the Max Weber Center for Advanced Cultural & Social Studies, University of Erfurt, examines the political thought of the German protestant theorist of natural law, Samuel von Pufendorf (1632-1694). Pufendorf was much admired by John Locke, and made important contributions to natural law theory, especially the The Law of Nature and Nations (1672), German constitutional theory, and European history. In the immediate aftermath of the Thirty Years War (1618-48) Pufendorf appealed to educated Europeans using arguments derived from natural law and his study of history “to live sociably,” i.e. people had to be brought to see that this was the necessary requirement for their chance of leading whatever life they wished to pursue. Knud Haakonssen is joined in the discussion by Aaron Garrett from Boston University, Ian Hunter from the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Queensland, and Michael Zuckert from the University of Notre Dame.

See the Archive of "Liberty Matters".

OLL | Liberty Matters December 4, 2016

David M. Hart, “Classical Liberalism and the Problem of Class” (Nov. 2016)

It is not well known that classical liberal thought has had a strong tradition within it of thinking about “class”, namely the idea that one group of people live off the labor and taxes of another group of people. In this discussion David Hart, the Director of Liberty Fund’s Online Library of Liberty, explores this “other tradition” of thinking about class which can be traced back to the 17th century and which was was taken up again by Murray Rothbard in the 1950s and 1960s in what he describes as the “Rothbardian synthesis” of classical liberal class analysis, Austrian economics, and New Left class analysis. He provides a brief survey of its history, examines some of the key concepts within this tradition, and raises some problems which contemporary scholars need to explore further, in particular the theoretical coherence and usefulness of the “Rothbardian synthesis.” He is joined in the discussion by Gary Chartier, Distinguished Professor of Law and Business Ethics at La Sierra University in Riverside, California; Steve Davies, the education director at the Institute of Economic Affairs in London; Jayme Lemke, a senior research fellow and associate director of academic and student programs at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University; and the independent scholar George H. Smith.

See the archive of Liberty Matters.

OLL | Liberty Matters November 26, 2016

David M. Hart, "On the Spread of (Classical) Liberal Ideas" (March 2015)

In this Liberty Matters online discussion forum we explore a number of issues concerning the role ideas have had in changing societies by examining several historical examples such as the anti-slavery movement in Britain and America in the first half of the 19th century, Richard Cobden and the free trade movement, and the rebirth of classical liberal and free market ideas after the Second World War. In the Lead Essay David Hart surveys the field of ideological movements and present a theory of ideological production and distribution based upon Austrian capital theory as it might be applied to the production of ideas. The commentators are Stephen Davies who is education director at the Institute of Economic Affairs in London; David Gordon who is a Senior Fellow at the Mises Institute; Jason Kuznicki who is a Research Fellow at the Cato Institute and Editor, Cato Unbound; Peter Mentzel who is a Senior Fellow at Liberty Fund; Jim Powell who is a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute; George H. Smith who is an independent scholar and contributor to libertarianism.org; and Jeffrey Tucker who is a distinguished fellow at the Foundation for Economic Education, editor at Laissez Faire Books, and founder of Liberty.me.

See the Archive of "Liberty Matters".

Here are the 10 latest posts from OLL | Images of Liberty.

OLL | Images of Liberty September 16, 2017

Encyclopedic Liberty and Industry

EncyclopedieThis illustrated essay explores some images of "liberty" and "industry" from Diderot’s Encyclopédie, ou Dictionnaire raisonné des sciences, des arts et des métiers (Encyclopaedia, or a Systematic Dictionary of the Sciences, Arts, and Crafts) (1751-1772). They have been taken from Liberty Fund’s anthology of articles, Encyclopedic Liberty: Political Articles in the Dictionary of Diderot and D'Alembert (2016) and the supplementary volumes of illustrations from the original 18th century edition.

OLL | Images of Liberty September 16, 2017

Encyclopedic Liberty and Industry

Mises on Gresham’s Law and Ancient Greek Silver Coins

In an Appendix to his The Theory of Money and Credit (1912) the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) discussed the value of a silver coin issued by Gelon the King of Syracuse in 480 BC. A picture of the coin was used on the original cover of the book. Mises was interested in these coins because he believed that sound currency emerged in the ancient world as a result of the productive economic activity which went on in places such as Lydia (Turkey) and Athens. These places remained economically powerful only so long as they retained a sound currency, which he believed Athens did and the other Greek city states did not. The Appendix about this coin is included below along with the illustration.

OLL | Images of Liberty December 4, 2016

Ngrams and the Changing Vocabulary of Class Analysis in 19th Century Classical Liberal Thought

| | | Honoré Daumier, "The Army Hierarchy" (1850s)
[See higher resolution image] |

What are Ngrams?

According to the Wikipedia article on The Google Ngram Viewer:

The Google Ngram Viewer or Google Books Ngram Viewer is an online search engine that charts frequencies of any set of comma-delimited search strings using a yearly count of n-grams found in sources printed between 1500 and 2008 in Google's text corpora in American English, British English, French, German, Spanish, Russian, Hebrew, or Chinese, generated in either 2008 or 2012; there are also some specialized English-language corpora, such as English Fiction. ...

The program can search for a single word or a phrase, including misspellings or gibberish. The n-grams are matched with the text within the selected corpus, optionally using case-sensitive spelling (which compares the exact use of uppercase letters), and, if found in 40 or more books, are then plotted on a graph.

<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Ngram_Viewer>

Art of the Levellers

In the course of putting together a multi-volume collection of over 240 Leveller Tracts I came across some very interesting title pages which used typography and occasionally woodcuts to add graphical force to the political and economic arguments being made by the authors. The pamphlets were published in their thousands during the 1640s and 1650s - the London bookseller George Thomason collected 23,000 of them over a period of twenty years and these comprise a major collection which is held by the British Library.

OLL | Images of Liberty April 12, 2016

Samuel warns the Israelites of the Dangers of Kings

24vb-450.jpg

"Saul is ordered to destroy all the Amalekites and their livestock,"
[page 24 verso, lower panel]
The Morgan Picture Bible (c. 1250)

Many Christians in 17th century England and 17th and 18th century North America were struck by some passages in I Samuel in which the prophet Samuel warned about the dangers a King would pose to the liberties of the Israelite people. This struck a chord with those who were fighting the growing power of the Stuart monarchy or the efforts of the British Empire to exert its power over the North American colonies. The art we have chosen to illustrate these passages come from the Illustrated Bible commissioned by King Louis IX (1214-1270) of France in the mid-13th century. They provide a stark contrast to the anti-monarchical sentiment of 17th and 18th century Englishmen. Louis IX arranged for these illustrations to be made because he wanted to assert his divine right to rule France and saw in the commands of Samuel and the actions of King Saul both historical and theological precedent upon which he could draw to justify his own behavior.

OLL | Images of Liberty April 12, 2016

Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen

To celebrate Bastille Day this year we have a beautiful poster which was printed at the time of the issuing of the Declaration to spread its message throughout the country. It was designed to be hung in public places so that ordinary people could see what the Assembly was doing in their name. George Jellinek in his study of the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of Citizens (1895, English trans. by Max Farand 1901) argues that the French were strongly influenced by the precedents of the American states' constitutions and bill of rights which were developed during the American Revolution. Here is an example:

OLL | Images of Liberty April 12, 2016

Adam Smith and J.B. Say on the Division of Labour

One of the most famous stories in economics is Adam Smith's story of the pin-maker. It has been repeated endlessly by other economists as it encapsulates quite nicely one of the key insights of economic analysis, namely the benefits of the division of labor. It would have to rank alongside Frédéric Bastiat's story of the broken window in popularity. The purpose of the story is to illustrate how much greater output could be achieved if numerous workers cooperated by taking one small task each in building a complex good like a pin or a nail. Adam Smith developed his ideas about the division of labour in the 1760s and 1770 as he was giving lectures and writing the Wealth of Nations (1776). At the same time Denis Diderot in France was compiling the famous Encyclopédie, ou dictionnaire raisonné des sciences, des arts et des métiers which appeared between 1751 and 1772. The articles in the Encyclopédie were accompanied by beautifully drawn illustrations, such as the ones we include below of a pin factory. Members of both the Scottish and French enlightenments were facsinated by the opportunities offered by technological and economic change in such things as seemingly "very trifling" as the making of a pin.

OLL | Images of Liberty April 12, 2016

Ludwig von Mises on Rationing in WW2

Monday 13 February 2012

During the war years the Austrian-American free market economist Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) wrote a number of books which criticised government intervention and control of the economy, especially price controls, rationing, policies of economic autarchy, the diversion of labor and other resources to war production, and the financing of the war through loans, confiscation, and inflation. While Mises was living and working in the U.S. he would have seen the propaganda produced by the American government encouraging U.S. citizens to make sacrifices for the war effort, such as the use of "ration books" and price controls in order to allocate resources away from consumers and towards war industries, to seek work in "essential" war industries and the transport of munitions, and to forgo the use of certain products essential to the war effort such as fats and rubber. We reproduce some of these imageshere.

 

Rationing_450.jpg

 

 

Herbert Roese, "Rationing means a fair share for all of us" (American Office of Price Administration, 1943)

OLL | Images of Liberty April 12, 2016

New Picture of Tocqueville in 1848

Friday 10 February 2012

While putting Tocqueville's "Recollections" online I found this lovely "photogravure" picture of him here which I compare to a contemporary picture of Bastiat, both of whom served in the Chamber of Deputies during the 1848 Revolution.

 

Tocqueville_Recollections1600-portrait400.jpg

 

 

Here are the 10 latest posts from OLL | Quotations.

Here are the 10 latest posts from OLL | Liberty Fund Books.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books November 7, 2017

Early Economic Thought in Spain, 1177-1740 (Marjorie Grice-Hutchinson)

In the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, clerics gave lectures at the University of Salamanca on such topics as the varying purchasing power of money, the morality of money, and how price is determined. While she was teaching at the London School of Economics, Marjorie Grice-Hutchinson was urged to investigate early records of these lectures. Her study of the manuscript notes of these then-obscure lectures led to her interest in the development of economic ideas in early Spain and their subsequent influence on the rest of Western Europe. The ideas of the Spanish scholastics influenced the work of Pufendorf, Locke, and Hutcheson, and the economic thinking of Condillac, Turgot, and Say. Grice-Hutchinson studied at the London School of Economics, where she received her Ph.D. on the monetary theory of the School of Salamanca under the supervision of F. A. Hayek.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books November 6, 2017

In Pursuit: Of Happiness and Good Government (Charles Murray)

In Pursuit: Of Happiness and Good Government begins by examining James Madison’s statement: “A good government implies two things; first, fidelity to the object of government, which is the happiness of the people; secondly, a knowledge of the means by which that object can best be attained.” Murray exhibits a thoughtful, accessible writing style as he considers such basic, important questions as whether individual efforts or government reform should be responsible for dealing with society’s problems. Drawing from his minimalist-government viewpoint, Murray proposes that government not try to force happiness on the people with federal policies or programs but, rather, that it provide conditions that enable people to pursue happiness on their own.

Murray also proposes that the pursuit of happiness be used as a framework for analyzing the efficacy of public policy, and he comes to the conclusion that Jeffersonian democracy is still the best way to run society, even today’s complex society.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books October 18, 2017

Democracy in America. English Edition. Vol. 2. (Alexis de Tocqueville)

Volume 2 of a two volume English only version of Liberty Fund’s 4 volume bi-lingual critical edition. In 1831, Alexis de Tocqueville and his friend Gustave de Beaumont visited the United States. From Tocqueville’s copious notes of what he had seen and heard came the classic text De la Démocratie en Amérique, published in two large volumes, the first in 1835, the second in 1840. The first volume focused primarily on political society; the second, on civil society.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books October 18, 2017

Democracy in America. English Edition. 2 vols. (Alexis de Tocqueville)

A two volume English only version of Liberty Fund’s 4 volume bi-lingual critical edition. In 1831, Alexis de Tocqueville and his friend Gustave de Beaumont visited the United States. From Tocqueville’s copious notes of what he had seen and heard came the classic text De la Démocratie en Amérique, published in two large volumes, the first in 1835, the second in 1840. The first volume focused primarily on political society; the second, on civil society.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books October 18, 2017

Democracy in America. English Edition. Vol. 1 (Alexis de Tocqueville)

Volume 1 of a two volume English only version of Liberty Fund’s 4 volume bi-lingual critical edition. In 1831, Alexis de Tocqueville and his friend Gustave de Beaumont visited the United States. From Tocqueville’s copious notes of what he had seen and heard came the classic text De la Démocratie en Amérique, published in two large volumes, the first in 1835, the second in 1840. The first volume focused primarily on political society; the second, on civil society.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books October 18, 2017

Tocqueville’s Voyages: The Evolution of His Ideas and Their Journey Beyond His Time (Christine Dunn Henderson)

Tocqueville’s Voyages is a collection of newly written essays by some of the most well-known Tocquevillian scholars today. The essays in the first part of the volume explore the development of Tocqueville’s thought, his intellectual voyage, during his trip to America and while writing Democracy in America. The second part of the book focuses on the dissemination of Tocqueville’s ideas beyond the Franco-American context of 1835–1840 in places such as Argentina, Japan, and Eastern Europe.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books September 13, 2017

Philosophiae moralis institutio compendiaria (1747, 2007) (Francis Hutcheson)

This Liberty Fund publication of Philosophiae Moralis Institutio Compendiaria is a parallel edition of the English and Latin versions of a book designed by Hutcheson for use in the classroom. General Editor Knud Haakonssen remarks that “Hutcheson’s Institutio was written as a textbook for university students and it therefore covers a curriculum which has an institutional background in his own university, Glasgow. This was a curriculum crucially influenced by Hutcheson’s predecessor Gershom Carmichael, and at its center was modern natural jurisprudence as systematized by Grotius, Pufendorf, and others… . The Institutio is the first major [published] attempt by Hutcheson to deal with natural law on his own terms… . It therefore encapsulates the axis of natural law and Scottish Enlightenment ideas, which so many other thinkers, including Adam Smith, worked with in th

OLL | Liberty Fund Books September 12, 2017

Encyclopedic Liberty: Political Articles in the Dictionary of Diderot and D’Alembert (Denis Diderot)

d'Alembert and DiderotThis anthology is the first endeavor to bring together the most significant political writing from the entire twenty-million-word compendium known as The Encyclopedia. It includes eighty-one of the most original, controversial and representative articles on political ideas, practices, and institutions, many translated into English for the first time. The articles cover such topics as the foundations of political order, the relationship between natural and civil liberty, the different types of constitutional regimes, the role of the state in economic and religious affairs, and the boundaries between manners, morals, and laws.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books July 14, 2017

The Collected Works of Frédéric Bastiat. Vol. 3: Economic Sophisms and “What is Seen and What is Not Seen” (Frédéric Bastiat)

Economic SophismsVol. 3 of a 6 vol. collection of the works of the 19th century French political economist Frédéric Bastiat. This volume contains the complete collection of Economic Sophisms, a third of which have never been translated before; as well as a new translation of What is Seen and What is Not Seen. A detailed glossary and several Appendices contain information about the people, institutions, and ideological issues of his day.

Additional information about the Bastiat translation project can be found at the Bastiat Project Summary page.

OLL | Liberty Fund Books September 22, 2016

Institutes of Divine Jurisprudence. With Selections from Foundations of the Law of Nature and Nations (Christian Thomasius)

First published in 1688, Thomasius’s Institutes attempted to draw a clear distinction between natural and revealed law and to emphasize that human reason was able to know the precepts of natural law without the aid of Scripture. His Foundations published in 1705 revised the theory he had put forward in the Institutes.