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Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

  • James A. Colaiaco

Abstract

While sailing homeward to England on the Red Sea in the spring of 1872, and fresh with the experience of India, Fitzjames Stephen began firing. ‘broadsides’ at John Stuart Mill.1 The result was a series of brilliant and penetrating articles written for the Pall Mall Gazette, later collected and published in March 1873 as Liberty, Equality, Fraternity.2 The book is the most comprehensive statement of his thought, illustrating the relationships he understood to exist between politics, law, religion and morality. Leslie Stephen considered it an ‘apologia’ or manifesto of his brother’s deepest convictions.3 Fitzjames later said, somewhat unjustly to himself, that it was ‘little more than the turning of an Indian lantern on European problems’.4 India was where many of the ideas which he had been expounding for more than a decade were fully developed and put to the test of experience. As he noted in the Preface to the first edition, his Indian labours had ‘strongly confirmed the reflections which the book contains, and which had been taking shape gradually in my mind for many years’.5

Keywords

Human Nature Public Opinion Individual Liberty Universal Suffrage Free Discussion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 11.
    John Morley, Recollections, vol. I (New York, 1917) p.55.Google Scholar
  2. 68.
    Patrick Devlin, The Enforcement of Morals (Oxford, 1965)Google Scholar
  3. 69.
    H. L. A. Hart, Law, Liberty and Morality (New York, 1963).Google Scholar
  4. 84.
    A. V. Dicey, Introduction to the Study of the Law of the Constitution, 9th edn (London, 1941) ch. 4.Google Scholar
  5. 118.
    John Plamenatz, The English Utilitarians, 2nd rev. edn (1958) ID-9.Google Scholar
  6. 125.
    See Frederic Harrison, ‘The Religion of Inhumanity’, Fortnightly Review, xix (June 1873) 677–99, at p. 677.Google Scholar
  7. 127.
    Alexander Bain, John Stuart Mill: A Criticism with Personal Recollections (New York, 1882) p. 111.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 131.
    See E. M. Everett, The Party of Humaniy: The ‘Fortnightly Review’ and its Contributors, 1865–1875 (Chapel Hill, NC, 1939).Google Scholar
  9. 133.
    Quoted in D. A. Hamer, John Morley: Liberal Intellectual in Politics (Oxford, 1968) p. 86.Google Scholar
  10. 134.
    F. W. Hirst, Early Life and Letters of John Morley, vol. i. (London, 1927) p. 239.Google Scholar
  11. 142.
    A. V. Dicey, Lectures on the Relation between Law and Public Opinion in England during the Nineteenth Century (London, 1905) p. 427n.Google Scholar
  12. 145.
    Sir Ernest Barker, Political Thought in England: 1848–1914, 2nd edn (London, 1928) p. 150.Google Scholar
  13. 146.
    Laski Holmes, 12 Feb 1924; in Holmes-Laski Letters, 1916–35, ed. Mark D. Howe (Cambridge, Mass., 1953) vol. i, p. 592.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© James A. Colaiaco 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • James A. Colaiaco

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