Spinoza on civil liberation

Journal of the History of Philosophy 47 (1):pp. 35-58 (2009)
In the final chapter of the Tractactus Theologico-Politicus , Spinoza declares that “the purpose of the state is, in reality, freedom.” While this remark obviously purports to tell us something important about Spinoza’s conception of the civitas , it is not clear exactly what is revealed. Recently, a number of scholars have interpreted this passage in a way that supports the view that Spinoza was a liberal for whom civic norms are rather more modest than the freedom of the Ethics . Against this view, I provide an interpretation of Spinoza’s account of civil liberation that enables us to view the political writings as an extension of his larger ethical enterprise. Specifically, I show that, according to Spinoza, the state can promote robust liberty in a variety of ways, not least by influencing the behavioral patterns and affective dispositions of its citizens.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1353/hph.0.0082
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 15,914
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Matthew J. Kisner (2012). Spinoza’s Liberalism. Philosophy Compass 7 (11):782-793.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

43 ( #77,450 of 1,725,575 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #268,753 of 1,725,575 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.