Essay on the First Principles of Government

Essay on the First Principles of Government
Page de titre de Essay de Joseph Priestley.

Essay on the First Principles of Government est l'un des premiers ouvrages de la théorie politique moderne libérale, publié en 1768, par le polymathe britannique Joseph Priestley. Il est l'un des plus approfondis de Priestley sur le sujet, il distingue avec précision, de manière inhabituelle pour l'époque, les droits politiques des droits civils et plaide en faveur de droits civils étendus. Priestley distingue sphère privée et publique, en soutenant que le gouvernement ne devrait avoir de contrôle que sur la sphère publique. Éducation et religion, en particulier, soutient-il, sont des questions de conscience privée et ne doivent pas être administrées par l'État. Le radicalisme ultérieur de Priestley provient de sa conviction que le gouvernement britannique porte atteinte à ces libertés individuelles[1].

Il fut édité à trois reprises en anglais et traduit en néerlandais. Jeremy Bentham mentionna que l'ouvrage lui avait inspiré son Felicific calculus[2].

Sommaire

Notes et références

  1. F. W. Gibbs 1965, p. 39–43; Jenny Uglow 2002, p. 169; Alan Tapper 2002, p. 315; Anne Holt 1931, p. 34–37
  2. Robert E. Schofield 1997, p. 207-208.

Bibliographie

  • (en) F. W. Gibbs, Joseph Priestley: Adventurer in Science and Champion of Truth., London, Thomas Nelson and Sons, 1965 (OCLC 60943449) 
  • (en) Anne Holt, A Life of Joseph Priestley., London, Oxford University Press, 1931 (OCLC 230752942) 
  • (en) Robert E. Schofield, The Enlightenment of Joseph Priestley: A Study of his Life and Work from 1733 to 1773, University Park, Pennsylvania State University Press, 1997 (ISBN 0271016620) 
  • (en) Alan Tapper, Dictionary of Literary Biography, British Philosophers 1500–1799, Detroit, Eds. Philip B. Dematteis and Peter S. Fosl. Gale Group, 2002, « Joseph Priestley » 
  • (en) Jenny Uglow, The Lunar Men: Five Friends Whose Curiosity Changed the World, New York, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2002 (ISBN 0374194408) 

Voir aussi

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