Russian Thinkers - Herzen and Bakunin on Individual Liberty Summary & Analysis

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Herzen and Bakunin on Individual Liberty Summary and Analysis

Despite differences of temperament and gifts, both Alexander Herzen and Mikhail Bakunin placed individual liberty at the center of their writing and activism. Herzen was the most effective publicist of the nineteenth century, while Bakunin exercised a powerful, personal magnetism despite more limited literary ability. Yet despite his revolutionary earnestness and influence on the tradition of political conspiracy, Bakunin expressed no new or original ideas. Behind a dazzling, and seemingly careless, prose style, Herzen was a moral and political thinker of first importance, and his ideas deserve more attention than they have yet received.

Herzen's world was dominated by French and German romanticism, which developed partly to explain the failures of the French Revolution. Hegel's philosophy saw societies and institutions as possessing an inner "spiritual" core, which the eighteenth-century rationalists had...

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This section contains 624 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Russian Thinkers Study Guide
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