A Strange Alliance: Isaiah Berlin and the Liberalism of the Fringes

Yael Tamir
June 1998
Ethical Theory & Moral Practice;Jun1998, Vol. 1 Issue 2, p279
Academic Journal
This paper is a homage to Isaiah Berlin. It argues that Berlin's philosophy has preceded many of the present discussions concerning liberalism-culturalism. In an age in which most liberal philosophers ignored the importance of belonging, of membership, identity, cultural affiliations and historical continuity, Berlin stands out as a welcome exception. His philosophy is therefore fresh and innovative as it was in the sixties and seventies when it was written. It carries within it the germs of the liberalism of the fringes advocated nowadays by members of national minorities, immigrants, women, and gays, the kind of liberalism which fits well the politics of identity and recognition.


Related Articles

  • Between Freedom and Belonging: Ignatieff and Berlin on Nationalism. Ipperciel, Donald; Woo, Jennifer // British Journal of Canadian Studies;2009, Vol. 22 Issue 2, p155 

    This article aims to make sense of the apparent incoherencies in Michael Ignatieff's theory of nationalism by first considering how he interprets his mentor's theory of nationalism. Ignatieff was greatly influenced by Isaiah Berlin in his writings on liberalism and nationalism, to the point of...

  • Invigilating Republican Liberty. Lang, Gerald // Philosophical Quarterly;Apr2012, Vol. 62 Issue 247, p273 

    Republican liberty, as recently defended by Philip Pettit and Quentin Skinner, characterises liberty in terms of the absence of domination, instead of, or in addition to, the absence of interference, as favoured by Berlin-style negative liberty. This article considers several claims made on...

  • Berlin's Methodological Parsimony. Weinstock, Daniel M. // San Diego Law Review;Fall2009, Vol. 46 Issue 4, p839 

    In this article, the author discusses the critical responses on the essay of English philosopher and historian, Isaiah Berlin entitled "Two Concepts of Liberty," which points out limitations of negative liberty's positive counterpart. He states that the Berlinian negative liberty's critiques can...

  • Human Freedom. MCMAHON, FRED; DOWD, ALAN // Independent Review;Summer2014, Vol. 19 Issue 1, p65 

    The article discusses various aspects of human freedom. Topics discussed include the 1958 essay "Two Concepts of Library," by social and political theorist Isaiah Berlin, the philosophical underpinnings of the Human Freedom Index (HFI) program, and the earlier influential views regarding...

  • „PAMATINÄ–S‟ LAISVÄ–S REPREZENTACIJOS AGONALAUS LIBERALIZMO KONTEKSTE. Pankovskij, Anatolij // Politologija;2008, Issue 52, p63 

    The topic of the article is the problem of the dualism of positive and negative liberty, presented in Isaiah Berlin's doctrine of agonical liberalism. This problem is analyzed in the context of liberal discussion basing on "agonical deconstruction" as an interpretative strategy that allows...

  • Between Logic and Psychology: The Links between Value Pluralism and Liberal Theory. Galston, William // Review of Politics;Jan2013, Vol. 75 Issue 1, p97 

    Although I welcome the opportunity to discuss Alex Zakaras's fine essay, I fear that my response will disappoint him (and perhaps others as well). I find his arguments cogent and plausible, if not altogether persuasive, but many of them are directed against claims that I do not think I made. Two...

  • `Two concepts of liberty' thirty years later: A Sartre-inspired critique. McBride, William L. // Social Theory & Practice;Fall90, Vol. 16 Issue 3, p297 

    The article focuses on philosopher Isaiah Berlin's lecture "Two Concepts of Liberty." Berlin was never regarded as a quintessential proponent of Oxford analytic philosophy. He was always somewhat apart. He was an enormously engaging lecturer to audiences of scholars and undergraduates alike,...

  • Negative Freedom and Cultural Belonging: An Unhealthy Tension in the Political Philosophy of Isaiah Berlin. Honneth, Axel // Social Research;Winter99, Vol. 66 Issue 4, p1063 

    The article analyzes the tension between the notions of negative freedom and cultural belonging based on the political views of philosopher Isaiah Berlin. He was convinced that the normative ideal of negative liberty somewhat depends on a critique of rational monism as it was developed in that...

  • The Limits on Freedom. Robinson, Dave; Groves, Judy // Introducing Political Philosophy;12/ 1/2006, p162 

    The article focuses on the outlook of political philosophers on political freedom. Many political philosophers believe that human beings are conditioned to accept limited kinds of political choice. On the other hand, most citizens thinks that absolute personal freedom cannot be achieved. It...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics