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The literature of liberalism

The Economist |  17 September 2018  |  News

THE definition of liberalism has long been the source of disagreement. The tension between its various strands—such as American progressivism, libertarianism and the classical tradition in which The Economist was founded—can seem irreconcilable. So for Open Future, an initiative aimed at sparking debate around liberal values, we aimed to build a bibliography of liberalism in its it many forms.

On August 2nd we published an initial list of 11 liberal thinkers and their works, and asked for your help in identifying others. Your reaction has been overwhelming. In six weeks, we have received nearly 900 responses, suggesting over 300 different thinkers, from readers all around the world commenting via email, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Medium and on the article itself. The most popular names ranged from philosophers and politicians, to columnists and poets (see chart).


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