Smith explains some reasons why the temperance movement switched from advocating voluntary methods to calling for coercive prohibitory laws during the 1830s.
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 discusses the influence of puritanism, the religious revival in the early 19th century, and Spooner’s disagreements with Christian ethics.
Smith summarizes Lysander Spooner’s objections to the most popular arguments in favor of the prohibition of alcohol.
Smith discusses the schism in the abolitionist movement over the constitutionality of slavery, and he begins his analysis of Lysander Spooner’s arguments in The Unconstitutionality of Slavery.
Smith provides some background on Spooner’s influential book The Unconstitutionality of Slavery.
Smith details the scholarly debate between Lysander Spooner and Wendell Phillips over the constitutionality of slavery.
With his 250th essay, Smith interrupts his series on abolitionism to offer some reflections on writing essays.
Smith discusses Spooner’s secular theory of natural law and his belief that no legislation is valid unless it conforms to natural law.
Smith discusses some early justifications of slavery and how they repudiated natural rights.
Smith discusses some major controversies provoked by the debate over ratification of the U.S. Constitution.
Smith discusses some controversies over slavery during the framing of the Constitution, especially the three-fifths clause.
Smith explains some features of the slave trade and the constitutional provision that it would not be banned in America for at least 20 years.
Smith summarizes the arguments of delegates as to whether the slave trade should be prohibited in the Constitution.
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 Spooner’s defense of the right to use violence in self-defense, even against agents of a government.
Smith explores some features of Spooner’s philosophy of law, as found in The Unconstitutionality of Slavery.
Smith explains why Spooner believed that defending the unconstitutionality of slavery was essential to abolitionism.
Smith discusses Spooner’s contention that the Constitution carries no moral authority but that it still can be understood as antislavery.