Review of Metaphysics 59 (2):410-411 (2005)

Nicholas Capaldi, in the preface of his definitive biography of Mill, lists several reasons why “an intellectual biography of Mill is especially useful”. According to Capaldi, one of these reasons Mill would appreciate: “As he [Mill] said in an 1846 article, ‘What shapes the character is not what is purposely taught, so much as the unintentional teaching of institutions and social relations.’ Mill was very much a figure of his time, both shaped by it and helping to shape it. He was, in the best sense, the quintessential Victorian Liberal. Recent scholarship has begun to make a more balanced assessment of Victorian Britain, both its influence upon and its continuing relevance to our own world. An intellectual biography of Mill constitutes a contribution to that larger enterprise and benefits from that larger contextualization”.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0034-6632
DOI revmetaph2005592122
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