John Stuart Mill on Liberty and Control

By Joseph Hamburger | Go to book overview

Chapter Four
CANDOR OR CONCEALMENT

You are doubtless aware that here an author who should openly admit to antireligious or even antichristian opinions, would compromise not only his social position, which I feel myself capable of sacrificing to a sufficiently high objective, but also, and this would be more serious, his chance of being read. (John Stuart Mill)

THAT MILL concealed his religious opinions in works published during his lifetime is evident. One need only compare such works with his other writing. In essays that were put aside for posthumous publication Mill did not conceal his atheism.1 His most severe and systematic criticisms of Christian theology and of both natural and revealed religion appeared in two essays written during the mid-1850s— “Nature” and “Utility of Religion”—and in “Theism,” composed in 1868–70. These three essays were not published until 1874, the year following his death. He also reminded his wife that in the draft of his autobiography (composed in 1853–54) there was “an unreserved proclamation of our opinions on religion.”2 In it he was forthright, and he called on others to be the same. “On religion in particular it appears to me to have now become a duty for all who … [are persuaded] that the current opinions are not only false but hurtful, to make their dissent known.”3 But this was not a call he would heed in 1854. It was for those reading his posthumously published Autobiography—as it turned out, in 1873.

In letters to trusted and like-minded friends, as in unpublished essays, he wrote as one with nothing to hide. He confessed his lack of faith and belief to Carlyle and Comte.4 To his father's old friend Walter Coulson he put the question: “How can morality be anything but the chaos it now is, when the ideas of right and wrong, just and unjust, must be wrenched into accordance either with the notions of a tribe of barbarians in a corner of Syria three thousand years ago, or with what is called the order of

____________________
1
On the suitability of the term ‘atheist,’ see above, chap. 3, n.47.
2
Mill to Harriet Taylor Mill, 24 February [1854], CW, 14, 168.
3
Early Draft, Autobiography, CW, 1, 46–47.
4
See above, chapter 3, note 47 and text at notes 9–12.

-55-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
John Stuart Mill on Liberty and Control
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • John Stuart Mill on Liberty and Control *
  • Contents *
  • Editor's Note ix
  • Preface xi
  • Acknowledgments xix
  • John Stuart Mill on Liberty and Control *
  • Chapter One - Liberty and Control 3
  • Chapter Two - Cultural Reform 18
  • Chapter Three - Mill and Christianity 42
  • Chapter Four - Candor or Concealment 55
  • Chapter Five - Arguments about Christianity in on Liberty 86
  • Chapter Six - The Religion of Humanity 108
  • Chapter Seven - Individuality and Moral Reform 149
  • Chapter Eight - How Much Liberty? 166
  • Chapter Nine - Mill's Rhetoric 203
  • Epilogue 225
  • Index 235
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 239

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.