• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How and to what extent, have modern liberals departed from the ideas of classical liberalism?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How and to what extent, have modern liberals departed from the ideas of classical liberalism? Like every ideology that is developed there are similarities and differences between the original and the modern ideology. Modern liberalism is no exception, it did have some links back to classical liberalism but it had to change due to the Industrial changes in the 19th/20th Century. Therefore to a large extent modern liberals did depart from classical liberalism and in a number of different ways. Classical liberalism was the earliest liberal tradition, classical liberal ideas have taken a variety of forms but they have a number of common characteristics. These characteristics take the forms of egoistical individualism, negative freedom and the state is regarded as a 'necessary evil'. Egoistical individualism means that you view human beings as rationally self interested creatures. This means that individuals in society are self sufficient, this leads on to the classical liberals believing in minimal state intervention. The second characteristic they believe in is negative freedom. ...read more.

Middle

The basis of modern liberalism was linked to the foundations of classical liberalism as they developed through industry. It would be the fat e of the industry that would change the liberal ideology forever. Industrialisation had brought about massive wealth but created massive poverty, accompanied by ignorance and disease. This brought about social inequality which couldn't be ignored. The idea of economic individualism came under attack and the liberal's had to change their ideas, the minimal state intervention was not possible and they had to be prepared to advocate the development of an interventionist state. So we see that the modern liberals have changed one of the main characteristics behind classical liberalism and have created a more state intervention. This was the beginning of Modern liberalism, the distinctive ideas of modern liberalism included individuality, positive freedom, social liberalism and economic management. J. S. Mills's ideas have been described as 'the heart of liberalism' due to the fact that he created a bridge between the two branches of liberalism. ...read more.

Conclusion

The modern liberals also believed in economic management, this was in basic terms, management of the economy in order to deliver prosperity to the people. John Maynard Keynes the thinker behind Keynesian economics put forward many ideas; he said that the governments should mange their own economies by influencing the level of demand. A free market left on its own can only lead to a downwards spiral, which Keynes saw as the cause of the Great Depression. This once again rejects classical liberal thinking as it, in particular its belief in a self-regulating free market or the doctrine of laissez faire economics In Conclusion I do believe that the Modern liberals to a great extent have departed from the originals views of the classical liberals. How ever there is evidence of some ideas that are still incorporated in the Modern Liberal ideology. This is no surprise as modern liberalism as some would say has smoothed the rough edges of Classical liberalism. The main reason why the modern liberals adopted these new ideas was due to development of industrialisation and the actions of this. A Level - Politics 28/09/04 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Political Philosophy section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Political Philosophy essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    How and to what extent has modern liberalism departed from the ideas of classical ...

    5 star(s)

    Classical Liberals recognised the importance of free trade and laissez faire economics as providing the greatest amount of liberty as well as clearing the way for economic development. Adam Smith, the famous classical liberal economist emphasised the importance of free trade as not just aiding economic prosperity, but also as freedom not to be controlled or coerced.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Analyse the similarities and differences between Classical and Modern Liberalism

    4 star(s)

    Politicians and thinkers associated with it are Smith, Ricardo and Locke. Modern liberal ideas were related to the further development of industrialisation and thus people associate it with the period between the mid-19th century and the mid-20th century and with figures such as J. S. Mill, Green and Lloyd- George.

  1. Analyse The Main Features of Classical Liberalism

    Locke used the claim that men are naturally free and equal as part of the justification for understanding legitimate political government as the result of a social contract where people in the state of nature conditionally transfer some of their rights to the government in order to better insure the stable, comfortable enjoyment of their lives, liberty, and property.

  2. How and why does Locke explain the creation, value and protection of property?

    Locke believed primitive man existed in a state of nature, which was one of peace, goodwill, and preservation. In this state, property was common in the sense that everyone had an equal right to draw subsistence from whatever was offered in nature.

  1. The development of fascist doctrine.

    The one is intrinsic to the other:. In 1935, Stefano Raguso insisted that even the "simplest community of men is inconceivable unless sustained by an active principle of organization [and] ... this principle of organization consists in the subordination to a sovreign, political power".

  2. To what extent did the key political ideas directly Influence change and development in ...

    This form of rule however, was in no way the method of reaching the utopia society that Marx had foreseen, there was absolutely no way forward for the people of Russia. This became apparent by the late 1980?s, when over thirty years after the death of the tyrant Stalin, the

  1. To what extent do the similarities between Classical Liberals and Modern Liberals outweigh the ...

    This is known as ?development individualism?, linked to collectivism, as it entails ?rolling forward? the state, which will lay down the conditions that foster personal growth and human flourishing. This is another example of classical and modern liberals agreeing that individualism is important, but disagreeing as to the way in which to achieve it.

  2. To what extent do the similarities between classical and modern liberalism outweigh the differences? ...

    Economists such as Adam Smith argued against mercantilism, believing that a free market reflected the freedom of individuals to make their own choices and would maximise pleasure for all. This theory is linked to utilitarianism as it considers people to be self-interested.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work