Chapter 2 On the evolution and diversity of liberalisms
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Drawing from historical work by Helena Rosenblatt, this chapter first shows that the commonplace depiction of classical liberalism is a myth. Most of the founders of modern liberalism in the early nineteenth century were not atomistic individualists. They stressed the role of the community and emphasized duties as well as rights. Benthamite utilitarianism has also been important in the history of liberalism and socialism. It influenced John Stuart Mill, but he ended up with a position that was very different from Bentham’s. After being ascendent in the nineteenth century, in the twentieth century liberalism was driven back by fascism and communism. The Mont Pèlerin Society was formed in 1947. Originally a broad liberal forum, it narrowed its viewpoint under the leadership of Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig Mises and Milton Friedman. The chapter discusses neoliberalism, communitarianism and post-liberalism. It ends with a call to reinvigorate a moral liberalism.

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