Political Theory

Liberty and the Virtue of Liberality


This conference was designed for nonacademic conferees with expertise in philanthropy, as staff members in foundations, development officers at nonprofit institutions, consultants, and donors. The purpose of the conference was to cast the philanthropic work of these people in a philosophical and historical context by exploring the nature of liberality as a character trait of free people and of free societies.


From Liberty Fund

The Theory of Moral Sentiments

by By Adam Smith
Edited by D. D. Raphael and A. L. Macfie

The Theory of Moral Sentiments, Smith’s first and in his own mind most important work, outlines his view of proper conduct and the institutions and sentiments that make men virtuous. Here he develops his doctrine of the impartial spectator, whose hypothetical disinterested judgment we must use to distinguish right from…

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Additional Readings

Aquinas, Thomas. “Summa Theologica, Book II, Part II, Question 23.” New Advent. http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3023.htm (July 2012).

Aquinas, Thomas (Saint). The Summa Theologica, Part II. Translated by Fathers of the English Dominican Province. London: Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., 1916. http://oll.libertyfund.org/title/1967 (accessed ).

Aristotle. Nicomachean Ethics. Edited by Terence Irwin. Indianapolis: Hackett, 1999.

Aristotle. Politics. Translated by C.D.C. Reeve. Indianapolis: Hackett, 1998.

Plato. The Republic of Plato, Second Edition. Translated by Allan Bloom. New York: Basic Books, 1991.

Tocqueville, Alexis de. Democracy in America. Edited by Harvey C. Mansfield and Delba Winthrop. Translated by Harvey C. Mansfield and Delba Winthrop. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000.

Tolstoy, Leo. Great Short Works. New York: Perennial Classics, 2004.