The Elements of Politics

Bristol, U.K.: Cambridge University Press (1908)
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Abstract

One of the most influential of the Victorian philosophers, Henry Sidgwick also made important contributions to fields such as economics, political theory and classics. A proponent of the utilitarianism of Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill, which he analysed in his classic work The Methods of Ethics, he later turned to the practical side of politics in this work, published in 1891. His aim was to have a 'rational discussion of political questions in modern states', and he offers a thorough examination of Victorian politics, beginning with a discussion of political theory before moving on to more concrete matters such as property and law. The later chapters discuss the function of government through themes such as procedural matters, international affairs, war, political parties, and public participation, giving a comprehensive account of both ideas about and the functioning of late-nineteenth-century government.

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