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Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature, and Other Essays

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  236 ratings  ·  14 reviews
This volume represents some of Rothbard's most advanced and radical theorizing on topics impacting on human liberty. Appearing first in 1974, this volume, more than any of other, came to build a generation of libertarian scholars that looked beyond the trapping of conventional left-right thinking, and hence laid the groundwork for the current intellectual revolt against ce ...more
Unknown Binding, 321 pages
Published December 31st 2000 by Ludwig Von Mises Institute (first published 2000)
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4.27  · 
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 ·  236 ratings  ·  14 reviews

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Jan 02, 2014 rated it it was ok
Somewhat disappointing. There is much to like about Rothbard as a writer, economist and even as a historian of economic thought, but in many ways these essays, even the much-vaunted "Anatomy of the State," generally lack depth, and are even crankish at times (his essay on women's liberation, for example, demonstrates that Rothbard had no idea what people mean when they talk about "treating women as sex objects"). The titular essay is pretty good, and "Left and Right" is interesting in some histo ...more
Dec 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone interested in anarchocapitalism
As this book is a collection of essays, loosely connected by the theme of egalitarianism and leftism, I will review each essay separately, then give a short opinion on the book as a whole. So you know where I'm coming from: I consider myself a great admirer of Rothbard, and him as the single biggest influence on my worldview. However, I deviate a lot from some of his more theoretical ideas, and am not averse to criticizing him when it's due. With that said, let's begin.

The titular essay, Egalita
Daniel Moss
I've read several of these essays either as standalones or in "Economics Controversies." But, a couple of these essays were both new to me and very good: "Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature" & "Left and Right: The Prospects for Liberty."

In "Egalitarianism...", in addition to some very nice quotes, Rothbard early on tears down the economists who sneak the doctrine into their writings, and then later explains why: "This means, of course, that equality of all men—the egalitarian ideal—c
Feb 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A fascinating collection of essays that further elucidated what it means to be a libertarian. Not only does he demonstrate in these essays his commitment to liberty based on sound first principles, but he also shows a clear passion for deductive reasoning that is clearly articulated and consistently applied. Don't let his common sense language fool you; those plain words come from an erudite mind that is matched by few. To say that it is impressive for an economist to demonstrate not only compet ...more
Its a mixed bag. The first (title) essay is meh. Unnecessarily alienating to the left, and doesn't even really sink the opposing position.

The second and third essays were "Left and Right: The Prospects for Liberty"

and "Anatomy of the State"

I enjoyed them most of all. Left and Right first is a great outline of the libertarian "revisionist" take on intellectual and material history and should really be its own book.

"Justice and Property
João Ritto
Feb 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
I am quite surprised to see that I read this one only two years ago. In my memory it seemed to be in a much more distant past, which kind of shows how much my political/philosophical ideas have changed in the last years. But so has the world, populism was not known to be a threat back then - no Trump, no Brexit, no M5s, no Le Pen, etc.

If I were to read this book today probably I would rate it lower, but because to be sure I would have to read it again, I will not downgrade it, just review it. Ro
May 11, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: philosophy
Definitely mixed thoughts about this. Well written articles, though I don't find that they convinced me of anything I didn't already agree with. It could have benefited from editing into a more cohesive book, instead of repetitious separate articles.
May 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: politics-read
War, Peace and the State is reason enough to buy this whole book. Once you read that you will never look at the whole the same way again
Craig Bolton
Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature and Other Essays by Murray N. Rothbard (2000)
Apr 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Basic deconstruction of anti-hierarchical leftist psychology, but does not go to the Nietzschean length of it.
Bryan Smith
Aug 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Overall good stuff. Most of the essays I agreed with, some I wasn't too sure. However I think it was a good introduction for me to dive into the writings of Rothbard.
Jun 07, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Textbook libertarian dogma.
Feb 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A sharp critique of wide variety of subjects including income equality, statism, public sector, women's liberation, conservation. Amazing clarity of thought.
Stefan Matias
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
A lot of great content and arguments from Rothbard in this collection. My main criticism of Rothbard is his lack of citations for certain important claims, such as for historical ones like "when the Spanish Anarchists (anarcho-communists of the Bakunin–Kropotkin type) took over large sections of Spain during the Civil War of the 1930s, they confiscated and destroyed all the money in their areas and promptly decreed the death penalty for the use of money." Having too many sources is always better ...more
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Murray Newton Rothbard was an influential American historian, natural law theorist and economist of the Austrian School who helped define modern libertarianism. Rothbard took the Austrian School's emphasis on spontaneous order and condemnation of central planning to an individualist anarchist conclusion, which he termed "anarcho-capitalism".

“Dutt effectively concluded with a quote from an editor of the highly respected Current History Magazine: The new America [the editor had written in mid-1933] will not be capitalist in the old sense, nor will it be socialist. If at the moment the trend is towards fascism, it will be an American fascism, embodying the experience, the traditions, and the hopes of a great middle-class nation.13 Thus,” 0 likes
“In the field of justice, man's will is all; men can move mountains, if only men so decide.” 0 likes
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