Hayek on Liberty

Hayek on Liberty

Hayek on Liberty

Hayek on Liberty

Synopsis

Not available since the 1980s, this up-dated edition by the leading political philosopher, John Gray, outlines his new position on Hayek. In a substantial new chapter, Gray assesses how far the historical development of the last ten years can be deployed in a critique of Hayek's thought. His reassessment is not only a provoking study of a classical philosopher. It is also a timely contribution to the debate over the future of conservatism, as Gray argues that Hayekian liberalism - 'the most well-articulated political theory of the new right' - is flawed.

Excerpt

As part of the reawakening of public and scholarly interest in the intellectual tradition of classical liberalism, Hayek’s writings in a range of academic disciplines have been recalled from a period of neglect during which it seemed to many that they had been consigned to oblivion. It is not an exaggeration to say that the re-emergence of classical liberalism and the rediscovery of Hayek’s writings are complementary aspects of a single current of opinion. For, while Hayek’s writings address and illuminate some of the most formidable issues of the age, and answer to many comtemporary anxieties, they do so within the frame of thought constructed by the great classical liberals. Hayek’s work is in the tradition of classical liberalism, not simply because his concerns are in many areas those of Locke and Burke, Adam Smith and Kant, but also because, like the theorists of liberalism’s Golden Age in the eighteenth century, Hayek seeks to raise up a system of ideas, a structure of principles with the aid of which we can understand social and political life and subject it to reasoned criticism. No-one who knows Hayek’s work can doubt that his attempt to restate liberal principles in a form appropriate to the circumstances and temper of the twentieth century has

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