Smith explains methodological individualism and its implications for the existence of institutions and other social phenomena.
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 explains the defense of rights and other abstract political principles given by James Mackintosh, one of Burke’s most effective critics.
Smith discusses the value of sociology and some misconceptions of methodological individualism.
Smith explains Herbert Spencer’s views of the scientific status of sociology, the nature of social laws, and the practical value of social science.
Smith explores the controversy over whether sociology qualifies as an authentic science.
Smith explains how the methodological monism of modern positivism differs from classical empiricism.
Smith explains methodological subjectivism and how it applies to the study of human action.
Smith discusses Paine’s welfare proposals in Rights of Man and Agrarian Justice.
Smith explores various ways in which ideas influence human action, and why ideas are essential to the success of libertarianism.
Smith pays tribute to Roy Childs.
John Gray’s discussion of Objectivism in Seven Types of Atheism, which is egregiously and inexcusably bad, relies on portraying Ayn Rand as a cult leader.
Smith discusses the role of modern intellectuals in government.
With his 250th essay, Smith interrupts his series on abolitionism to offer some reflections on writing essays.
Continuing his review of Gray’s Seven Types of Atheism, Smith explains how Gray greatly exaggerates Nietzsche’s influence on Rand, and he criticizes Gray’s misstatements about Rand’s notion of sacrifice.
Smith discusses the claim that some beliefs are immoral and the role of credibility in choosing our beliefs.
The ideal of individual freedom is more than a will-o’-the-wisp. It was widely appreciated in the past and so may become widely appreciated in the future.
Defending freedom requires an interdisciplinary approach, so in this column George H. Smith turns to the “human sciences”—and also to a definition of science itself.
Smith presents an overview of the philosophy of the human sciences.