Liberalism, economic freedom, and the limits of markets

Social Philosophy and Policy 24 (1):120-140 (2007)
  Copy   BIBTEX


This paper points to a lost and ignored strand of argument in the writings of liberalism's earliest defenders. These “classical” liberals recognized that market liberty was not always compatible with individual liberty. In particular, they argued that labor markets required intervention and regulation if workers were not to be wholly subjugated to the power of their employers. Functioning capitalist labor markets (along with functioning credit markets) are not “natural” outgrowths of exchange, but achievements hard won in the battle against feudalism. Further, and crucially, the existence of such markets required closing off other market choices. Footnotesa I would like to thank the other contributors to this volume, and its editors, for their helpful comments on an earlier draft of this essay.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 94,726

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Labor markets.Andrzej Klimczuk - 2017 - In Bryan S. Turner (ed.), The Wiley-Blackwell Encyclopedia of Social Theory. Hoboken: Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 1--5.
Economic Liberalism.Edward Soule - 1999 - Dissertation, Washington University
The Wage Setting Process.Thomas Christiano - 2018 - Erasmus Journal for Philosophy and Economics 11 (2):57-84.
Market Freedom as Antipower.Robert S. Taylor - 2013 - American Political Science Review 107 (3):593-602.
Liberty, Nondomination, Markets.Paul Sagar - 2019 - Review of Politics 81 (3):409-434.
Why Markets Don't Stop Discrimination.Cass R. Sunstein - 1991 - Social Philosophy and Policy 8 (2):22-37.


Added to PP

364 (#60,381)

6 months
8 (#528,488)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Debra Satz
Stanford University

Citations of this work

Efficiency, Equity, and Price Gouging: A Response to Zwolinski.Jeremy Snyder - 2009 - Business Ethics Quarterly 19 (2):303-306.
Adam Smith on Markets and Justice.Lisa Herzog - 2014 - Philosophy Compass 9 (12):864-875.
Ethics, economics, and markets: an interview with Debra Satz.Debra Satz - 2010 - Erasmus Journal for Philosophy and Economics 3 (1):68.
In Defense of a Democratic Productivist Welfare State.Michael Moehler - 2017 - European Journal of Philosophy 25 (2):416-439.

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references