Self-Interest and Social Order in Classical Liberalism

Intellectual surveys of Hume, Smith, Hobbes, Butler, Mandeville, and Hutcheson and their respective contributions to political philosophy.

There is a well-worn image and phrase for libertarianism: “atomized individualism.” This hobgoblin has spread so thoroughly that even some libertarians think their philosophy unreservedly supports private persons, whatever the situation, whatever their behavior. Smith’s Self-Interest and Social Order in Classical Liberalism, corrects this misrepresentation with careful intellectual surveys of Hume, Smith, Hobbes, Butler, Mandeville, and Hutcheson and their respective contributions to political philosophy.

The essays in this book originally appeared on Libertarianism.org.