Smith begins his discussion of the need for an interdisciplinary approach to liberty by noting some hazards of academic specialization.
George H. Smith
George H. Smith was formerly Senior Research Fellow for the Institute for Humane Studies, a lecturer on American History for Cato Summer Seminars, and Executive Editor of Knowledge Products. Smith's fourth and most recent book, The System of Liberty, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2013.
Smith examines the problem of whether the human sciences can be value-free, and if so in what sense.
Smith discusses some preliminary issues involved in the classic libertarian distinction between the spheres of “state” and “society.”
Smith explores Humboldt’s defense of individuality, written in 1792.
Smith explains how Spooner reconciled his theory of nonvoting with his view that the Constitution is antislavery, and how he treated discussions of slavery during the Constitutional Convention.
Smith discusses how William Lloyd Garrison and Wendell Phillips differed in their approaches to non-voting.
Smith explains how Robert Paul Wolff and Immanuel Kant used the same principle of moral autonomy to reach opposite conclusions about the legitimacy of the state.
Smith discusses Spooner’s contention that the Constitution carries no moral authority but that it still can be understood as antislavery.
Smith explores some features of Spooner’s philosophy of law, as found in The Unconstitutionality of Slavery.
Smith discusses Spooner’s defense of the right to use violence in self-defense, even against agents of a government.
Smith discusses the arguments of Wendell Phillips that abolitionists should not vote or hold political office.
Smith reviews Sandefur’s biography, Frederick Douglass: Self-Made Man, published by the Cato Institute in 2018.
Smith explains the thinking of James Birney when he liberated his slaves.
Smith explains how George Fitzhugh defended slavery on the grounds that it provides an ideal system of socialism.
Smith discusses how peace activists and pacifists justified their support of the North during the Civil War.
Smith defends the pacifist Garrison from the charge of hypocrisy for supporting the Union during the Civil War.
Smith summarizes Spooner’s basic arguments for the unconstitutionality of slavery.
Smith discusses the prevalence of violence against abolitionists during the 1830s, and how Wendell Phillips became an abolitionist.