Anarchism and Authority (Ashgate New Critical Thinking in by Paul McLaughlin PDF

By Paul McLaughlin

Interpreting the political thought of anarchism from a philosophical and old viewpoint, Paul McLaughlin relates anarchism to the basic moral and political challenge of authority. The ebook can pay specific awareness to the authority of the country and the anarchist rejection of all conventional claims made for the legitimacy of kingdom authority, the writer either explaining and protecting the critical tenets of the anarchist critique of the state.The founding works of anarchist proposal, by way of Godwin, Proudhon and Stirner, are explored and anarchism is tested in its historic context, together with the impact of such occasions because the Enlightenment and the French Revolution on anarchist inspiration. ultimately, the foremost theoretical advancements of anarchism from the late-nineteenth century to the current are summarized and evaluated.This e-book is either a hugely readable account of the improvement of anarchist pondering and a lucid and well-reasoned defence of the anarchist philosophy.

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Extra resources for Anarchism and Authority (Ashgate New Critical Thinking in Philosophy)

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79]) as paternalistic authority. ) Janet Biehl (London, 1997), pp. 80–84. 36 Anarchism and Authority which case it isn’t sceptical at all – or attempts to vindicate or provide a ‘certain foundation’ for a more or less limited form of it – in which case it has more in common with Cartesian (anti-)scepticism than anarchist scepticism. Accordingly, liberals like Wilhelm von Humboldt are concerned to set limits to ‘legitimate government’, while anarchists, influenced, as we will see, by Rousseau, are interested in the very legitimacy of the institution, limited or otherwise.

15 Some of Martin’s ideas here are interesting and instructive. His distinction between the ‘moralistic’ tradition of anarchism (which attempts to show the moral ‘undesirability’ of political authority, and, in fact, more besides) and Wolff’s conceptual form of anarchism (which is concerned with demonstrating the factual impossibility of governmental authority from a highly abstract ‘Kantian’ standpoint) is especially useful. Martin is correct in pointing to a ‘tension’ between these forms of anarchism, a tension that actually comes to the surface when ‘traditional’ anarchists like Clark attack Wolff’s anarchist credentials.

It is surely true to say, then, that ‘Anarchism can have no meaning as a social and political theory if it says nothing about praxis’. However, in our view, Clark overstates this component of the anarchist ideology. It is not obvious that the anarchist must, by definition, be an activist of some kind, as Clark implies – that the anarchist must do something in terms of praxis. 4 However, it is difficult to accept an activist stipulation on the anarchist ideology when such a stipulation does not apply to other ideologies, even ideologies of a fundamentally revolutionary nature.

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