Comte’s Appeal to Conservatives

  • H. M. Drucker


On any definition of ideology, Appeal to Conservatives fits. Comte’s aim is to present a system for the improvement of the human condition in such a way as to make the promulgation of the system so attractive as to make it tantamount to achievement of the ideal.1 Comte believed that the best of philosophers were those who changed the ideas of their contemporaries. Comte aspired to this height in order to change his world.2 He attributes to mere words a power beyond that which most will allow as prudent. He is very like the idealists whom Marx castigated at very nearly the same moment who believed that the logic of ideas — their ideas of course — could change the course of history.


True Interest Competition Point Mere Word Inconvenient Truth False Prophet 
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Notes and References

  1. 1.
    A. Comte, Appeal to Conservatives (London, 1889) p. 22.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    A. Comte, A System of Positive Polity (Paris, 1859) vol. III, p. 247.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Ibid., pp. 8 ff.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Ibid., p. 346.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    F. Manuel, The Prophets of Paris (Cambridge, Mass., 1962) pp. 263–74.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    J. S. Mill, Comte and Positivism (London, 1865) pp. 2–184.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Manual, Prophets of Paris, pp. 158, 266.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Comte, Appeal to Conservatives, p. 1.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Ibid., p. 11.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Manuel, Prophets of Paris, pp. 262–7, 274, 287–96.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Comte, Appeal to Conservatives, p. 59.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Comte, A System of Positive Polity, vol. II, pp. 346 f.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Comte, Appeal to Conservatives, p. 93.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Comte, A System of Positive Polity, vol. 1, p. 253.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© H. M. Drucker 1974

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. M. Drucker
    • 1
  1. 1.University of EdinburghUK

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