The year 2006 marked the two hundredth anniversary of John Stuart Mill's birth. Though his philosophical reputation has varied greatly, it is now clear that Mill ranks among the most influential modern political thinkers. Despite his enduring influence, the breadth and complexity of Mill's political thought is often underappreciated. While his writings remain a touchstone for debates over liberty and liberalism, many other important dimensions of his political philosophy have until recently been ignored. This book aims to correct such neglect, by illustrating the breadth and depth of Mill's political writings, by drawing together a collection of essays whose authors explore underappreciated elements of Mill's political philosophy. The book shows how Mill's thinking remains pertinent to our own political life in three broad areas - democratic institutions and culture, liberalism, and international politics - and offers a critical reassessment of Mill's political philosophy in light of recent political developments and transformations.
Nadia Urbinati is Neil Singer Professor of Contemporary Civilization at Columbia University in the Department of Political Science. She is the author of Mill on Democracy: From the Athenian Polis to Representative Government, which received the David and Elaine Spitz Prize as the best book in liberal and democratic theory published in 2002, and Representative Democracy: Principles and Genealogy. Professor Urbinati has edited the works of Carlo Rosselli, Liberal Socialism (1994) and Piero Gobetti, On Liberal Revolution (2000). Alex Zakaras is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Vermont. He is currently completing his first book on individuality and democratic citizenship in the writings of J. S. Mill and Ralph Waldo Emerson.
List of contributors; Introduction Nadia Urbaniti and Alex Zakaras; Part I. Liberty and its Limits: 1. Mill on liberty and on the Contagious Diseases Act Jeremy Waldron; 2. Rational freedom in John Stuart Mill's feminism Maria Morales; 3. The many heads of the hydra: J. S. Mill on despotism Nadia Urbinati; 4. J. S. Mill and Liberal Socialism Bruce Baum; 5. The method of reform: J. S. Mill's encounter with Bentham and Coleridge Frederick Rosen; Part II. Democracy and the Individual: 6. Bureaucracy, democracy, liberty: some unanswered questions in Mill's politics Alan Ryan; 7. Mill in parliament: when should a philosopher compromise? Dennis F. Thompson; 8. John Stuart Mill, individuality, and participatory democracy Alex Zakaras; 9. Mill's neo-Athenian model of Liberal Democracy Jonathan Riley; 10. John Stuart Mill on education and democracy Wendy Donner; Part III. Beyond National Borders: 11. Cosmopolitan patriotism in J. S. Mill's political thought and activism Georgios Varouxakis; 12. Mill and the imperial predicament Karuna Mantena; 13. Making sense of liberal imperialism Stephen Holmes; 14. Mill's 'A Few Words on Non-Intervention': a commentary Michael Walzer; Bibliography; Index.