John Stuart Mill

John Stuart Mill

Overview
John Stuart Mill was a British philosopher, economist and civil servant. An influential contributor to social theory
Social theory
Social theories are theoretical frameworks which are used to study and interpret social phenomena within a particular school of thought. An essential tool used by social scientists, theories relate to historical debates over the most valid and reliable methodologies , as well as the primacy of...

, political theory, and political economy
Political economy
Political economy originally was the term for studying production, buying, and selling, and their relations with law, custom, and government, as well as with the distribution of national income and wealth, including through the budget process. Political economy originated in moral philosophy...

, his conception of liberty
Liberty
Liberty is a moral and political principle, or Right, that identifies the condition in which human beings are able to govern themselves, to behave according to their own free will, and take responsibility for their actions...

 justified the freedom of the individual in opposition to unlimited state control. He was a proponent of utilitarianism
Utilitarianism
Utilitarianism is an ethical theory holding that the proper course of action is the one that maximizes the overall "happiness", by whatever means necessary. It is thus a form of consequentialism, meaning that the moral worth of an action is determined only by its resulting outcome, and that one can...

, an ethical theory developed by Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. He became a leading theorist in Anglo-American philosophy of law, and a political radical whose ideas influenced the development of welfarism...

. Hoping to remedy the problems found in an inductive
Inductive reasoning
Inductive reasoning, also known as induction or inductive logic, is a kind of reasoning that constructs or evaluates propositions that are abstractions of observations. It is commonly construed as a form of reasoning that makes generalizations based on individual instances...

 approach to science, such as confirmation bias
Confirmation bias
Confirmation bias is a tendency for people to favor information that confirms their preconceptions or hypotheses regardless of whether the information is true.David Perkins, a geneticist, coined the term "myside bias" referring to a preference for "my" side of an issue...

, he clearly set forth the premises of falsification
Falsifiability
Falsifiability or refutability of an assertion, hypothesis or theory is the logical possibility that it can be contradicted by an observation or the outcome of a physical experiment...

 as the key component in the scientific method
Scientific method
Scientific method refers to a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on gathering empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of...

.
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Quotations

Since the state must necessarily provide subsistence for the criminal poor while undergoing punishment, not to do the same for the poor who have not offended is to give a premium on crime.

Principles of Political Economy (1848), Chapter XI, §13.

I never meant to say that the Conservatives are generally stupid. I meant to say that stupid people are generally Conservative. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it.

Letter to the Conservative MP, Sir John Pakington (March 1866)
Encyclopedia
John Stuart Mill was a British philosopher, economist and civil servant. An influential contributor to social theory
Social theory
Social theories are theoretical frameworks which are used to study and interpret social phenomena within a particular school of thought. An essential tool used by social scientists, theories relate to historical debates over the most valid and reliable methodologies , as well as the primacy of...

, political theory, and political economy
Political economy
Political economy originally was the term for studying production, buying, and selling, and their relations with law, custom, and government, as well as with the distribution of national income and wealth, including through the budget process. Political economy originated in moral philosophy...

, his conception of liberty
Liberty
Liberty is a moral and political principle, or Right, that identifies the condition in which human beings are able to govern themselves, to behave according to their own free will, and take responsibility for their actions...

 justified the freedom of the individual in opposition to unlimited state control. He was a proponent of utilitarianism
Utilitarianism
Utilitarianism is an ethical theory holding that the proper course of action is the one that maximizes the overall "happiness", by whatever means necessary. It is thus a form of consequentialism, meaning that the moral worth of an action is determined only by its resulting outcome, and that one can...

, an ethical theory developed by Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. He became a leading theorist in Anglo-American philosophy of law, and a political radical whose ideas influenced the development of welfarism...

. Hoping to remedy the problems found in an inductive
Inductive reasoning
Inductive reasoning, also known as induction or inductive logic, is a kind of reasoning that constructs or evaluates propositions that are abstractions of observations. It is commonly construed as a form of reasoning that makes generalizations based on individual instances...

 approach to science, such as confirmation bias
Confirmation bias
Confirmation bias is a tendency for people to favor information that confirms their preconceptions or hypotheses regardless of whether the information is true.David Perkins, a geneticist, coined the term "myside bias" referring to a preference for "my" side of an issue...

, he clearly set forth the premises of falsification
Falsifiability
Falsifiability or refutability of an assertion, hypothesis or theory is the logical possibility that it can be contradicted by an observation or the outcome of a physical experiment...

 as the key component in the scientific method
Scientific method
Scientific method refers to a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on gathering empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of...

. Mill was also a Member of Parliament
Parliament of the United Kingdom
The Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is the supreme legislative body in the United Kingdom, British Crown dependencies and British overseas territories, located in London...

 and an important figure in liberal political philosophy
Liberalism
Liberalism is the belief in the importance of liberty and equal rights. Liberals espouse a wide array of views depending on their understanding of these principles, but generally, liberals support ideas such as constitutionalism, liberal democracy, free and fair elections, human rights,...

.

Biography


John Stuart Mill was born on Rodney Street in the Pentonville
Pentonville
Pentonville is an area of north-central London in the London Borough of Islington, centred on the Pentonville Road. The area is named after Henry Penton, who developed a number of streets in the 1770s in what was open countryside adjacent to the New Road...

 area of London, the eldest son of the Scottish philosopher, historian and economist James Mill
James Mill
James Mill was a Scottish historian, economist, political theorist, and philosopher. He was a founder of classical economics, together with David Ricardo, and the father of influential philosopher of classical liberalism, John Stuart Mill.-Life:Mill was born at Northwater Bridge, in the parish of...

, and Harriet Burrow. John Stuart was educated by his father, with the advice and assistance of Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. He became a leading theorist in Anglo-American philosophy of law, and a political radical whose ideas influenced the development of welfarism...

 and Francis Place
Francis Place
Francis Place was an English social reformer.-Early career and influence:Born in the debtor's prison which his father oversaw near Drury Lane, Place was schooled for ten years before being apprenticed to a leather-breeches maker. At eighteen he was an independent journeyman, and in 1790 was...

. He was given an extremely rigorous upbringing, and was deliberately shielded from association with children his own age other than his siblings. His father, a follower of Bentham
Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. He became a leading theorist in Anglo-American philosophy of law, and a political radical whose ideas influenced the development of welfarism...

 and an adherent of associationism
Associationism
Associationism in philosophy refers to the idea that mental processes operate by the association of one state with its successor states.The idea is first recorded in Plato and Aristotle, especially with regard to the succession of memories....

, had as his explicit aim to create a genius
Genius
Genius is something or someone embodying exceptional intellectual ability, creativity, or originality, typically to a degree that is associated with the achievement of unprecedented insight....

 intellect that would carry on the cause of
utilitarianism
Utilitarianism
Utilitarianism is an ethical theory holding that the proper course of action is the one that maximizes the overall "happiness", by whatever means necessary. It is thus a form of consequentialism, meaning that the moral worth of an action is determined only by its resulting outcome, and that one can...

 and its implementation after he and Bentham had died.

Mill was a notably precocious child. He describes his education in his autobiography. At the age of three he was taught Greek
Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek is the stage of the Greek language in the periods spanning the times c. 9th–6th centuries BC, , c. 5th–4th centuries BC , and the c. 3rd century BC – 6th century AD of ancient Greece and the ancient world; being predated in the 2nd millennium BC by Mycenaean Greek...

. By the age of eight he had read Aesop's Fables
Aesop's Fables
Aesop's Fables or the Aesopica are a collection of fables credited to Aesop, a slave and story-teller believed to have lived in ancient Greece between 620 and 560 BCE. The fables remain a popular choice for moral education of children today...

, Xenophon
Xenophon
Xenophon , son of Gryllus, of the deme Erchia of Athens, also known as Xenophon of Athens, was a Greek historian, soldier, mercenary, philosopher and a contemporary and admirer of Socrates...

's Anabasis
Anabasis (Xenophon)
Anabasis is the most famous work, in seven books, of the Greek professional soldier and writer Xenophon. The journey it narrates is his best known accomplishment and "one of the great adventures in human history," as Will Durant expressed the common assessment.- The account :Xenophon accompanied...

, and the whole of Herodotus
Herodotus
Herodotus was an ancient Greek historian who was born in Halicarnassus, Caria and lived in the 5th century BC . He has been called the "Father of History", and was the first historian known to collect his materials systematically, test their accuracy to a certain extent and arrange them in a...

, and was acquainted with Lucian
Lucian
Lucian of Samosata was a rhetorician and satirist who wrote in the Greek language. He is noted for his witty and scoffing nature.His ethnicity is disputed and is attributed as Assyrian according to Frye and Parpola, and Syrian according to Joseph....

, Diogenes Laërtius
Diogenes Laertius
Diogenes Laertius was a biographer of the Greek philosophers. Nothing is known about his life, but his surviving Lives and Opinions of Eminent Philosophers is one of the principal surviving sources for the history of Greek philosophy.-Life:Nothing is definitively known about his life...

, Isocrates
Isocrates
Isocrates , an ancient Greek rhetorician, was one of the ten Attic orators. In his time, he was probably the most influential rhetorician in Greece and made many contributions to rhetoric and education through his teaching and written works....

 and six dialogues of Plato
Plato
Plato , was a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the...

. He had also read a great deal of history in English and had been taught arithmetic
Arithmetic
Arithmetic or arithmetics is the oldest and most elementary branch of mathematics, used by almost everyone, for tasks ranging from simple day-to-day counting to advanced science and business calculations. It involves the study of quantity, especially as the result of combining numbers...

.

At the age of eight he began learning Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

, Euclid
Euclid
Euclid , fl. 300 BC, also known as Euclid of Alexandria, was a Greek mathematician, often referred to as the "Father of Geometry". He was active in Alexandria during the reign of Ptolemy I...

, and algebra
Algebra
Algebra is the branch of mathematics concerning the study of the rules of operations and relations, and the constructions and concepts arising from them, including terms, polynomials, equations and algebraic structures...

, and was appointed schoolmaster to the younger children of the family. His main reading was still history, but he went through all the commonly taught Latin
Latin literature
Latin literature includes the essays, histories, poems, plays, and other writings of the ancient Romans. In many ways, it seems to be a continuation of Greek literature, using many of the same forms...

 and Greek
Ancient Greek literature
Ancient Greek literature refers to literature written in the Ancient Greek language until the 4th century.- Classical and Pre-Classical Antiquity :...

 authors and by the age of ten could read Plato and Demosthenes
Demosthenes
Demosthenes was a prominent Greek statesman and orator of ancient Athens. His orations constitute a significant expression of contemporary Athenian intellectual prowess and provide an insight into the politics and culture of ancient Greece during the 4th century BC. Demosthenes learned rhetoric by...

 with ease. His father also thought that it was important for Mill to study and compose poetry. One of Mill's earliest poetry compositions was a continuation of the Iliad
Iliad
The Iliad is an epic poem in dactylic hexameters, traditionally attributed to Homer. Set during the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of the city of Troy by a coalition of Greek states, it tells of the battles and events during the weeks of a quarrel between King Agamemnon and the warrior Achilles...

. In his spare time, he also enjoyed reading about natural science
Natural science
The natural sciences are branches of science that seek to elucidate the rules that govern the natural world by using empirical and scientific methods...

s and popular novels, such as Don Quixote and Robinson Crusoe
Robinson Crusoe
Robinson Crusoe is a novel by Daniel Defoe that was first published in 1719. Epistolary, confessional, and didactic in form, the book is a fictional autobiography of the title character—a castaway who spends 28 years on a remote tropical island near Trinidad, encountering cannibals, captives, and...

.

His father's work, The History of British India
The History of British India
The History of British India is a history of British India by the 19th century British philosopher and imperial political theorist James Mill....

 was published in 1818; immediately thereafter, about the age of twelve, Mill began a thorough study of the scholastic
Scholasticism
Scholasticism is a method of critical thought which dominated teaching by the academics of medieval universities in Europe from about 1100–1500, and a program of employing that method in articulating and defending orthodoxy in an increasingly pluralistic context...

 logic
Logic
In philosophy, Logic is the formal systematic study of the principles of valid inference and correct reasoning. Logic is used in most intellectual activities, but is studied primarily in the disciplines of philosophy, mathematics, semantics, and computer science...

, at the same time reading Aristotle
Aristotle
Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and polymath, a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. His writings cover many subjects, including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, linguistics, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology...

's logical treatises in the original language. In the following year he was introduced to political economy
Political economy
Political economy originally was the term for studying production, buying, and selling, and their relations with law, custom, and government, as well as with the distribution of national income and wealth, including through the budget process. Political economy originated in moral philosophy...

 and studied Adam Smith
Adam Smith
Adam Smith was a Scottish social philosopher and a pioneer of political economy. One of the key figures of the Scottish Enlightenment, Smith is the author of The Theory of Moral Sentiments and An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations...

 and David Ricardo
David Ricardo
David Ricardo was an English political economist, often credited with systematising economics, and was one of the most influential of the classical economists, along with Thomas Malthus, Adam Smith, and John Stuart Mill. He was also a member of Parliament, businessman, financier and speculator,...

 with his father, ultimately completing their classical economic view
Classical economics
Classical economics is widely regarded as the first modern school of economic thought. Its major developers include Adam Smith, Jean-Baptiste Say, David Ricardo, Thomas Malthus and John Stuart Mill....

 of factors of production
Factors of production
In economics, factors of production means inputs and finished goods means output. Input determines the quantity of output i.e. output depends upon input. Input is the starting point and output is the end point of production process and such input-output relationship is called a production function...

. Mill's comptes rendus of his daily economy lessons helped his father in writing Elements of Political Economy in 1821, a textbook to promote the ideas of Ricardian economics
Ricardian economics
David Ricardo was born in 1772 and made a fortune as a stockbroker and loan broker. At the age of 27, he read An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith and was energized by the theories of economics. His main economic ideas are contained in Principles of Political...

; however, the book lacked popular support. Ricardo, who was a close friend of his father, used to invite the young Mill to his house for a walk in order to talk about political economy
Political economy
Political economy originally was the term for studying production, buying, and selling, and their relations with law, custom, and government, as well as with the distribution of national income and wealth, including through the budget process. Political economy originated in moral philosophy...

.

At age fourteen, Mill stayed a year in France with the family of Sir Samuel Bentham
Samuel Bentham
Sir Samuel Bentham was a noted English mechanical engineer and naval architect credited with numerous innovations, particularly related to naval architecture, including weapons...

, brother of Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. He became a leading theorist in Anglo-American philosophy of law, and a political radical whose ideas influenced the development of welfarism...

. The mountain scenery he saw led to a lifelong taste for mountain landscapes. The lively and friendly way of life of the French also left a deep impression on him. In Montpellier
Montpellier
-Neighbourhoods:Since 2001, Montpellier has been divided into seven official neighbourhoods, themselves divided into sub-neighbourhoods. Each of them possesses a neighbourhood council....

, he attended the winter courses on chemistry
Chemistry
Chemistry is the science of matter, especially its chemical reactions, but also its composition, structure and properties. Chemistry is concerned with atoms and their interactions with other atoms, and particularly with the properties of chemical bonds....

, zoology
Zoology
Zoology |zoölogy]]), is the branch of biology that relates to the animal kingdom, including the structure, embryology, evolution, classification, habits, and distribution of all animals, both living and extinct...

, logic
Logic
In philosophy, Logic is the formal systematic study of the principles of valid inference and correct reasoning. Logic is used in most intellectual activities, but is studied primarily in the disciplines of philosophy, mathematics, semantics, and computer science...

 of the Faculté des Sciences, as well as taking a course of the higher mathematics. While coming and going from France, he stayed in Paris for a few days in the house of the renowned economist Jean-Baptiste Say
Jean-Baptiste Say
Jean-Baptiste Say was a French economist and businessman. He had classically liberal views and argued in favor of competition, free trade, and lifting restraints on business...

, a friend of Mill's father. There he met many leaders of the Liberal party, as well as other notable Parisians, including Henri Saint-Simon
Claude Henri de Rouvroy, comte de Saint-Simon
Claude Henri de Rouvroy, comte de Saint-Simon, often referred to as Henri de Saint-Simon was a French early socialist theorist whose thought influenced the foundations of various 19th century philosophies; perhaps most notably Marxism, positivism and the discipline of sociology...

.

This intensive study however had injurious effects on Mill's mental health
Mental health
Mental health describes either a level of cognitive or emotional well-being or an absence of a mental disorder. From perspectives of the discipline of positive psychology or holism mental health may include an individual's ability to enjoy life and procure a balance between life activities and...

, and state of mind. At the age of twenty he suffered a nervous breakdown
Nervous breakdown
Mental breakdown is a non-medical term used to describe an acute, time-limited phase of a specific disorder that presents primarily with features of depression or anxiety.-Definition:...

. In chapter V of his Autobiography, he claims that this was caused by the great physical and mental arduousness of his studies which had suppressed any feelings he might have developed normally in childhood. Nevertheless, this depression eventually began to dissipate, as he began to find solace in the Mémoires of Jean-François Marmontel
Jean-François Marmontel
Jean-François Marmontel was a French historian and writer, a member of the Encyclopediste movement.-Biography:He was born of poor parents at Bort, Limousin...

 and the poetry of William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth was a major English Romantic poet who, with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, helped to launch the Romantic Age in English literature with the 1798 joint publication Lyrical Ballads....

.

Mill had been engaged in a pen-friendship with Auguste Comte
Auguste Comte
Isidore Auguste Marie François Xavier Comte , better known as Auguste Comte , was a French philosopher, a founder of the discipline of sociology and of the doctrine of positivism...

, the founder of positivism
Positivism
Positivism is a a view of scientific methods and a philosophical approach, theory, or system based on the view that, in the social as well as natural sciences, sensory experiences and their logical and mathematical treatment are together the exclusive source of all worthwhile information....

 and sociology
Sociology
Sociology is the study of society. It is a social science—a term with which it is sometimes synonymous—which uses various methods of empirical investigation and critical analysis to develop a body of knowledge about human social activity...

, since the two were both young men in the early 1820s. Comte's sociologie was more an early philosophy of science
Philosophy of science
The philosophy of science is concerned with the assumptions, foundations, methods and implications of science. It is also concerned with the use and merit of science and sometimes overlaps metaphysics and epistemology by exploring whether scientific results are actually a study of truth...

 than we perhaps know it today, and the positive philosophy aided in Mill's broad rejection of Benthamism.

Mill refused to study at the University of Oxford
University of Oxford
The University of Oxford is a university located in Oxford, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest surviving university in the world and the oldest in the English-speaking world. Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096...

 or the University of Cambridge
University of Cambridge
The University of Cambridge is a public research university located in Cambridge, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest university in both the United Kingdom and the English-speaking world , and the seventh-oldest globally...

, because he refused to take Anglican
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

 orders. Instead he followed his father to work for the East India Company
East India Company
The East India Company was an early English joint-stock company that was formed initially for pursuing trade with the East Indies, but that ended up trading mainly with the Indian subcontinent and China...

 until 1858. He was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
American Academy of Arts and Sciences
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences is an independent policy research center that conducts multidisciplinary studies of complex and emerging problems. The Academy’s elected members are leaders in the academic disciplines, the arts, business, and public affairs.James Bowdoin, John Adams, and...

 in 1856.

In 1851, Mill married Harriet Taylor
Harriet Taylor Mill
Harriet Taylor Mill was a philosopher and women's rights advocate. Her second husband was John Stuart Mill, one of the pre-eminent thinkers of the 19th century...

 after 21 years of an intimate friendship. Taylor was married when they met, and their relationship was close but generally believed to be chaste during the years before her first husband died. Brilliant in her own right, Taylor was a significant influence on Mill's work and ideas during both friendship and marriage. His relationship with Harriet Taylor reinforced Mill's advocacy of women's rights
Women's rights
Women's rights are entitlements and freedoms claimed for women and girls of all ages in many societies.In some places these rights are institutionalized or supported by law, local custom, and behaviour, whereas in others they may be ignored or suppressed...

. He cites her influence in his final revision of On Liberty, which was published shortly after her death. Taylor died in 1858 after developing severe lung congestion, after only seven years of marriage to Mill.

Between the years 1865–1868 Mill served as Lord Rector of the University of St. Andrews. During the same period, 1865-8, he was a Member of Parliament
Parliament of Great Britain
The Parliament of Great Britain was formed in 1707 following the ratification of the Acts of Union by both the Parliament of England and Parliament of Scotland...

 for City and Westminster
Westminster (UK Parliament constituency)
Westminster was a parliamentary constituency in the Parliament of England to 1707, the Parliament of Great Britain 1707-1800 and the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1801. It returned two members to 1885 and one thereafter....

, and was often associated with the Liberal Party
Liberal Party (UK)
The Liberal Party was one of the two major political parties of the United Kingdom during the 19th and early 20th centuries. It was a third party of negligible importance throughout the latter half of the 20th Century, before merging with the Social Democratic Party in 1988 to form the present day...

. During his time as an MP
Member of Parliament
A Member of Parliament is a representative of the voters to a :parliament. In many countries with bicameral parliaments, the term applies specifically to members of the lower house, as upper houses often have a different title, such as senate, and thus also have different titles for its members,...

, Mill advocated easing the burdens on Ireland. In 1866, Mill became the first person in the history of Parliament to call for women to be given the right to vote, vigorously defending this position in subsequent debate. Mill became a strong advocate of such social reforms as labour unions and farm cooperatives. In Considerations on Representative Government
Considerations on Representative Government
Considerations on Representative Government is the title of a book by John Stuart Mill published in 1861. As the title suggests, it is an argument for representative government, the ideal form of government in Mill's opinion.-External links:...

, Mill called for various reforms of Parliament and voting, especially proportional representation
Proportional representation
Proportional representation is a concept in voting systems used to elect an assembly or council. PR means that the number of seats won by a party or group of candidates is proportionate to the number of votes received. For example, under a PR voting system if 30% of voters support a particular...

, the Single Transferable Vote
Single transferable vote
The single transferable vote is a voting system designed to achieve proportional representation through preferential voting. Under STV, an elector's vote is initially allocated to his or her most preferred candidate, and then, after candidates have been either elected or eliminated, any surplus or...

, and the extension of suffrage
Suffrage
Suffrage, political franchise, or simply the franchise, distinct from mere voting rights, is the civil right to vote gained through the democratic process...

.

He was godfather to the philosopher Bertrand Russell
Bertrand Russell
Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell, OM, FRS was a British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, and social critic. At various points in his life he considered himself a liberal, a socialist, and a pacifist, but he also admitted that he had never been any of these things...

.

John Stuart Mill died in Avignon
Avignon
Avignon is a French commune in southeastern France in the départment of the Vaucluse bordered by the left bank of the Rhône river. Of the 94,787 inhabitants of the city on 1 January 2010, 12 000 live in the ancient town centre surrounded by its medieval ramparts.Often referred to as the...

, France, in 1873, where he was buried alongside his wife.

Theory of liberty


Mill's On Liberty
On Liberty
On Liberty is a philosophical work by British philosopher John Stuart Mill. It was a radical work to the Victorian readers of the time because it supported individuals' moral and economic freedom from the state....

 addresses the nature and limits of the power that can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual
Individual
An individual is a person or any specific object or thing in a collection. Individuality is the state or quality of being an individual; a person separate from other persons and possessing his or her own needs, goals, and desires. Being self expressive...

. One argument that Mill develops further than any previous philosopher is the harm principle
Harm principle
The harm principle holds that the actions of individuals should only be limited to prevent harm to other individuals. John Stuart Mill first articulated this principle in On Liberty, where he argued that "the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized...

. The harm principle holds that each individual has the right to act as he wants, so long as these actions do not harm others. If the action is self-regarding, that is, if it only directly affects the person undertaking the action, then society has no right to intervene, even if it feels the actor is harming himself. He does argue, however, that individuals are prevented from doing lasting, serious harm to themselves or their property by the harm principle. Because no-one exists in isolation, harm done to oneself also harms others, and destroying property deprives the community as well as oneself. Mill excuses those who are "incapable of self-government" from this principle, such as young children or those living in "backward states of society".

Mill argues that despotism
Despotism
Despotism is a form of government in which a single entity rules with absolute power. That entity may be an individual, as in an autocracy, or it may be a group, as in an oligarchy...

 is an acceptable form of government for those societies that are "backward", as long as the despot has the best interests of the people at heart, because of the barriers to spontaneous progress. Though this principle seems clear, there are a number of complications. For example, Mill explicitly states that "harms" may include acts of omission as well as acts of commission. Thus, failing to rescue a drowning child counts as a harmful act, as does failing to pay taxes, or failing to appear as a witness in court. All such harmful omissions may be regulated, according to Mill. By contrast, it does not count as harming someone if – without force or fraud – the affected individual consents to assume the risk: thus one may permissibly offer unsafe employment to others, provided there is no deception involved. (Mill does, however, recognise one limit to consent: society should not permit people to sell themselves into slavery
Voluntary slavery
Voluntary slavery is the condition of slavery freely entered into. In ancient times this was a common way for impoverished people to provide subsistence for themselves or their family and provision was made for this in law...

). In these and other cases, it is important to keep in mind that the arguments in On Liberty are grounded on the principle of Utility, and not on appeals to natural rights
Natural rights
Natural and legal rights are two types of rights theoretically distinct according to philosophers and political scientists. Natural rights are rights not contingent upon the laws, customs, or beliefs of any particular culture or government, and therefore universal and inalienable...

.

The question of what counts as a self-regarding action and what actions, whether of omission or commission, constitute harmful actions subject to regulation, continues to exercise interpreters of Mill. It is important to emphasise that Mill did not consider giving offence to constitute "harm"; an action could not be restricted because it violated the conventions or morals of a given society.

On Liberty
On Liberty
On Liberty is a philosophical work by British philosopher John Stuart Mill. It was a radical work to the Victorian readers of the time because it supported individuals' moral and economic freedom from the state....

 involves an impassioned defence of free speech. Mill argues that free discourse
Discourse
Discourse generally refers to "written or spoken communication". The following are three more specific definitions:...

 is a necessary condition for intellectual and social progress. We can never be sure, he contends, that a silenced opinion does not contain some element of the truth. He also argues that allowing people to air false opinions is productive for two reasons. First, individuals are more likely to abandon erroneous beliefs if they are engaged in an open exchange of ideas. Second, by forcing other individuals to re-examine and re-affirm their beliefs in the process of debate, these beliefs are kept from declining into mere dogma
Dogma
Dogma is the established belief or doctrine held by a religion, or a particular group or organization. It is authoritative and not to be disputed, doubted, or diverged from, by the practitioners or believers...

. It is not enough for Mill that one simply has an unexamined belief that happens to be true; one must understand why the belief in question is the true one.

Mill's view on social liberty and tyranny of majority


Mill believed that “the struggle between Liberty
Liberty
Liberty is a moral and political principle, or Right, that identifies the condition in which human beings are able to govern themselves, to behave according to their own free will, and take responsibility for their actions...

 and Authority
Authority
The word Authority is derived mainly from the Latin word auctoritas, meaning invention, advice, opinion, influence, or command. In English, the word 'authority' can be used to mean power given by the state or by academic knowledge of an area .-Authority in Philosophy:In...

 is the most conspicuous feature in the portions of history.” For him, liberty in antiquity was a “contest... between subjects, or some classes of subjects, and the government." Mill defined "social liberty" as protection from "the tyranny of political rulers." He introduced a number of different tyrannies, including social tyranny, and also the tyranny of the majority
Tyranny of the majority
The phrase "tyranny of the majority" , used in discussing systems of democracy and majority rule, is a criticism of the scenario in which decisions made by a majority under that system would place that majority's interests so far above a dissenting individual's interest that the individual would be...

.

Social liberty for Mill meant putting limits on the ruler’s power so that he would not be able to use his power on his own wishes and make decisions which could harm society; in other words, people should have the right to have a say in the government’s decisions. He said that social liberty was “the nature and limits of the power which can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual”. It was attempted in two ways: first, by obtaining recognition of certain immunities, called political liberties or rights; second, by establishment of a system of "constitutional checks".

However, in Mill's view, limiting the power of government was not enough. He stated, "Society can and does execute its own mandates: and if it issues wrong mandates instead of right, or any mandates at all in things with which it ought not to meddle, it practices a social tyranny more formidable than many kinds of political oppression, since, though not usually upheld by such extreme penalties, it leaves fewer means of escape, penetrating much more deeply into the details of life, and enslaving the soul itself.”

View on liberty


John Stuart Mill’s view on liberty
Liberty
Liberty is a moral and political principle, or Right, that identifies the condition in which human beings are able to govern themselves, to behave according to their own free will, and take responsibility for their actions...

, which was influenced by Joseph Priestley
Joseph Priestley
Joseph Priestley, FRS was an 18th-century English theologian, Dissenting clergyman, natural philosopher, chemist, educator, and political theorist who published over 150 works...

 and Josiah Warren
Josiah Warren
Josiah Warren was an individualist anarchist, inventor, musician, and author in the United States. He is widely regarded as the first American anarchist, and the four-page weekly paper he edited during 1833, The Peaceful Revolutionist, was the first anarchist periodical published, an enterprise...

, is that the individual
Individual
An individual is a person or any specific object or thing in a collection. Individuality is the state or quality of being an individual; a person separate from other persons and possessing his or her own needs, goals, and desires. Being self expressive...

 ought to be free to do as he wishes unless he harms others. Individuals are rational enough to make decisions about their good being and choose any religion they want to. Government should interfere when it is for the protection of society. Mill explains,

“The sole end for which mankind are warranted, individually or collectively, in interfering with the liberty of action of any of their number, is self-protection. That the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilised community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant. He cannot rightfully be compelled to do or forbear because it will be better for him to do so, because it will make him happier, because, in the opinion of others, to do so would be wise, or even right...The only part of the conduct of anyone, for which he is amenable to society, is that which concerns others. In the part which merely concerns him, his independence is, of right, absolute
Absolute (philosophy)
The Absolute is the concept of an unconditional reality which transcends limited, conditional, everyday existence. It is sometimes used as an alternate term for "God" or "the Divine", especially, but by no means exclusively, by those who feel that the term "God" lends itself too easily to...

. Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual
Individual
An individual is a person or any specific object or thing in a collection. Individuality is the state or quality of being an individual; a person separate from other persons and possessing his or her own needs, goals, and desires. Being self expressive...

 is sovereign
Sovereign
A sovereign is the supreme lawmaking authority within its jurisdiction.Sovereign may also refer to:*Monarch, the sovereign of a monarchy*Sovereign Bank, banking institution in the United States*Sovereign...

.”

Views on freedom of speech


An influential advocate of freedom of speech
Freedom of speech
Freedom of speech is the freedom to speak freely without censorship. The term freedom of expression is sometimes used synonymously, but includes any act of seeking, receiving and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used...

, Mill objected to censorship. He says: "I choose, by preference the cases which are least favourable to me – In which the argument against freedom of opinion, both on truth and that of utility
Utility
In economics, utility is a measure of customer satisfaction, referring to the total satisfaction received by a consumer from consuming a good or service....

, is considered the strongest. Let the opinions impugned be the belief of God and in a future state, or any of the commonly received doctrines of morality
Morality
Morality is the differentiation among intentions, decisions, and actions between those that are good and bad . A moral code is a system of morality and a moral is any one practice or teaching within a moral code...

... But I must be permitted to observe that it is not the feeling sure of a doctrine (be it what it may) which I call an assumption of infallibility
Infallibility
Infallibility, from Latin origin , is a term with a variety of meanings related to knowing truth with certainty.-In common speech:...

. It is the undertaking to decide that question for others, without allowing them to hear what can be said on the contrary side. And I denounce and reprobate this pretension not the less if it is put forth on the side of my most solemn convictions. However positive anyone's persuasion may be, not only of the faculty but of the pernicious consequences, but (to adopt expressions which I altogether condemn) the immorality and impiety of opinion. – yet if, in pursuance of that private judgement, though backed by the public judgement of his country or contemporaries, he prevents the opinion from being heard in its defence, he assumes infallibility. And so far from the assumption being less objectionable or less dangerous because the opinion is called immoral or impious, this is the case of all others in which it is most fatal.”

Mills outlines the benefits of 'searching for and discovering the truth' as a way to further knowledge. He argued that even if an opinion is false, the truth can be better understood by refuting the error. And as most opinions are neither completely true nor completely false, he points out that allowing free expression allows the airing of competing views as a way to preserve partial truth in various opinions. Worried about minority views being suppressed, Mills also argued in support of freedom of speech on political grounds, stating that it is a critical component for a representative government to have in order to empower debate over public policy. Mill also eloquently argued that freedom of expression allows for personal growth and self-realization. He said that freedom of speech was a vital way to develop talents and realise a person's potential and creativity. He repeatedly said that eccentricity was preferable to uniformity and stagnation.

Human rights and slavery


In 1850, Mill sent an anonymous letter (which came to be known under the title "The Negro Question"), in rebuttal to Thomas Carlyle
Thomas Carlyle
Thomas Carlyle was a Scottish satirical writer, essayist, historian and teacher during the Victorian era.He called economics "the dismal science", wrote articles for the Edinburgh Encyclopedia, and became a controversial social commentator.Coming from a strict Calvinist family, Carlyle was...

's anonymous letter to Fraser's Magazine for Town and Country. Carlyle had defended slavery on grounds of genetic inferiority and claimed that the West Indies development was due to British ingenuity alone and dismissed any notion that there was a debtedness to imported slaves for building the economy there. Mill's rebuttal and references to the ongoing debate in the US at the time regarding slavery were emphatic and eloquent. The full text, as well as a link to the Carlyle letter that prompted it, is available online.

Connection to feminism



Mill saw women’s issues as important and began to write in favour of greater rights for women. With this, Mill can be considered among the earliest feminists. In his article, “The Subjection of Women
The Subjection of Women
The Subjection of Women is the title of an essay written by John Stuart Mill in 1869, possibly jointly with his wife Harriet Taylor Mill, stating an argument in favour of equality between the sexes...

” (1861, published 1869), Mill attempts to prove that the legal subjugation of women is wrong and that it should give way to perfect equality. He talks about the role of women in marriage and how he felt it needed to be changed. There, Mill comments on three major facets of women’s lives that he felt are hindering them: society and gender construction, education, and marriage. Mill is also famous for being one of the earliest and strongest supporters of ever greater rights for women. His book The Subjection of Women
The Subjection of Women
The Subjection of Women is the title of an essay written by John Stuart Mill in 1869, possibly jointly with his wife Harriet Taylor Mill, stating an argument in favour of equality between the sexes...

 is one of the earliest written on this subject by a male author. He felt that the oppression of women was one of the few remaining relics from ancient times, a set of prejudices that severely impeded the progress of humanity.

Mill's ideas were opposed by Ernest Belfort Bax
Ernest Belfort Bax
Ernest Belfort Bax was a British socialist journalist and philosopher, associated with the Social Democratic Federation ....

 in his treatise, 'The Legal Subjugation of Men'.

Utilitarianism



The canonical statement of Mill's utilitarianism can be found in Utilitarianism
Utilitarianism (book)
John Stuart Mill's book Utilitarianism is a philosophical defense of utilitarianism in ethics. The essay first appeared as a series of three articles published in Fraser's Magazine in 1861; the articles were collected and reprinted as a single book in 1863...

. This philosophy has a long tradition, although Mill's account is primarily influenced by Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. He became a leading theorist in Anglo-American philosophy of law, and a political radical whose ideas influenced the development of welfarism...

 and Mill's father James Mill
James Mill
James Mill was a Scottish historian, economist, political theorist, and philosopher. He was a founder of classical economics, together with David Ricardo, and the father of influential philosopher of classical liberalism, John Stuart Mill.-Life:Mill was born at Northwater Bridge, in the parish of...

.

Mill's famous formulation of utilitarianism is known as the "greatest-happiness principle". It holds that one must always act so as to produce the greatest aggregate happiness among all sentient beings, within reason. Mill's major contribution to utilitarianism is his argument for the qualitative separation of pleasures. Bentham treats all forms of happiness as equal, whereas Mill argues that intellectual and moral pleasures are superior to more physical forms of pleasure. Mill distinguishes between happiness and contentment, claiming that the former is of higher value than the latter, a belief wittily encapsulated in the statement that "it is better to be a human being dissatisfied than a pig satisfied; better to be Socrates
Socrates
Socrates was a classical Greek Athenian philosopher. Credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, he is an enigmatic figure known chiefly through the accounts of later classical writers, especially the writings of his students Plato and Xenophon, and the plays of his contemporary ...

 dissatisfied than a fool satisfied. And if the fool, or the pig, are of a different opinion, it is because they only know their own side of the question."

Mill defines the difference between higher and lower forms of happiness with the principle that those who have experienced both tend to prefer one over the other. This is, perhaps, in direct contrast with Bentham's statement that "Quantity of pleasure being equal, push-pin is as good as poetry", that, if a simple child's game like hopscotch
Hopscotch
Hopscotch is a children's game that can be played with several players or alone. Hopscotch is a popular playground game.- Court and rules :- The court :...

 causes more pleasure to more people than a night at the opera house, it is more imperative upon a society to devote more resources to propagating hopscotch than running opera houses. Mill's argument is that the "simple pleasures" tend to be preferred by people who have no experience with high art, and are therefore not in a proper position to judge
Informed judge
The informed judge is a concept that 19th-century political philosopher John Stuart Mill used when describing utilitarianism. Mill posited that in order to find the better of two choices, one must find the choice that yields more happiness...

. Mill supported legislation that would have granted extra voting power to university graduates on the grounds that they were in a better position to judge what would be best for society. It should be noted that, in this example, Mill did not intend to devalue uneducated people and would certainly have advocated sending the poor but talented to universities: he believed that education, and not the intrinsic nature of the educated, qualified them to have more influence in government.

The qualitative account of happiness that Mill advocates thus sheds light on his account presented in On Liberty. As Mill suggests in that text, utility is to be conceived in relation to humanity "as a progressive being", which includes the development and exercise of rational capacities as we strive to achieve a "higher mode of existence". The rejection of censorship and paternalism is intended to provide the necessary social conditions for the achievement of knowledge and the greatest ability for the greatest number to develop and exercise their deliberative and rational capacities.

Economic philosophy



Mill's early economic philosophy was one of free market
Free market
A free market is a competitive market where prices are determined by supply and demand. However, the term is also commonly used for markets in which economic intervention and regulation by the state is limited to tax collection, and enforcement of private ownership and contracts...

s. However, he accepted interventions in the economy, such as a tax on alcohol, if there were sufficient utilitarian grounds. He also accepted the principle of legislative intervention for the purpose of animal welfare. Mill originally believed that "equality of taxation" meant "equality of sacrifice
Equality of sacrifice
Equality of sacrifice is a term used in political theory and political philosophy to refer to the perceived fairness of a coercive policy.John Stuart Mill noticed that citizens often view taxation laws as being fair, as long as taxation is also applied equally to everyone else in society...

" and that progressive tax
Progressive tax
A progressive tax is a tax by which the tax rate increases as the taxable base amount increases. "Progressive" describes a distribution effect on income or expenditure, referring to the way the rate progresses from low to high, where the average tax rate is less than the marginal tax rate...

ation penalised those who worked harder and saved more and was therefore "a mild form of robbery".

Given a tax break to the rich, Mill agreed that inheritance
Inheritance
Inheritance is the practice of passing on property, titles, debts, rights and obligations upon the death of an individual. It has long played an important role in human societies...

 should be taxed. A utilitarian society would agree that everyone should be equal one way or another. Therefore receiving inheritance would put one ahead of society unless taxed on the inheritance.
Those who donate should consider and choose carefully where their money goes—some charities are more deserving than others. Considering public charities boards such as a government will disperse the money equally. However a private charity board like a church would disperse the monies fairly to those who are in more need than others.

Later he altered his views toward a more socialist bent, adding chapters to his Principles of Political Economy in defence of a socialist outlook, and defending some socialist causes. Within this revised work he also made the radical proposal that the whole wage system be abolished in favour of a co-operative wage system. Nonetheless, some of his views on the idea of flat taxation remained, albeit in a slightly toned down form.

Mill's Principles of Political Economy, first published in 1848, was one of the most widely read of all books on economics in the period. As Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations
The Wealth of Nations
An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, generally referred to by its shortened title The Wealth of Nations, is the magnum opus of the Scottish economist and moral philosopher Adam Smith...

 had during an earlier period, Mill's Principles dominated economics teaching. In the case of Oxford University it was the standard text until 1919. The text that replaced it was written by Cambridge's Alfred Marshall
Alfred Marshall
Alfred Marshall was an Englishman and one of the most influential economists of his time. His book, Principles of Economics , was the dominant economic textbook in England for many years...

.

Economic democracy


Mill promoted economic democracy
Economic democracy
Economic democracy is a socioeconomic philosophy that suggests a shift in decision-making power from a small minority of corporate shareholders to a larger majority of public stakeholders...

 in the capitalist economy whereby labourers would elect members of management.

Mill's views on the environment


Mill demonstrated an early insight into the value of the natural world – in particular in Book IV, chapter VI of "Principles of Political Economy
Principles of Political Economy
Principles of Political Economy by John Stuart Mill was arguably the most important economics or political economy textbook of the mid nineteenth century. It was revised until its seventh edition in 1871, shortly before Mill's death in 1873, and republished in numerous other editions...

": "Of the Stationary State" in which Mill recognised wealth beyond the material, and argued that the logical conclusion of unlimited growth was destruction of the environment and a reduced quality of life. He concluded that a stationary state could be preferable to neverending economic growth:

I cannot, therefore, regard the stationary state of capital and wealth with the unaffected aversion so generally manifested towards it by political economists of the old school.



If the earth must lose that great portion of its pleasantness which it owes to things that the unlimited increase of wealth and population would extirpate from it, for the mere purpose of enabling it to support a larger, but not a better or a happier population, I sincerely hope, for the sake of posterity, that they will be content to be stationary, long before necessity compel them to it.

Mill's Theory of Economic Development



Mill regarded economic development as a function of land, labour and capital. While land and labour are the two original factors of production,capital is "a stock, previously accumulated of the products of former labour." Increase in wealth is possible only if land and capital help to increase production faster than the labour force. It is productive labour that is productive of wealth and capital accumulation. "The rate of capital accumulation is the function of the proportion of the labour force employed ' productively. Profits earned by employing unproductive labours are merely transfers of income; unproductive labour does not generate wealth or income" . It is productive labourers who do productive consumption. Productive consumption is that "which maintains and increase the productive capacity of the community." It implies that productive consumption is an input necessary to maintain productive labourers.

Control of Population Growth



Mill supported the Malthusian theory of population. By population he meant the number of the working class only. He was therefore concerned about the growth in number of labourers who worked for hire. He believed that population control was essential for improving the condition of the working class so that they might enjoy the fruits of the technological progress and capital accumulation. He propagated birth control as against moral restraint.

Wage Fund



According to Mill, the elasticity of supply is very high in response to high in wages . Wages generally exceed the minimum subsistence level. Wages are paid out of capital. Hence they are limited by existing fund of capital meant for paying wages . Thus wage per head can be derived at by dividing the total circulating capital by working population. Wages can increase by an increase in the aggregate fund of capital employed in hiring labour or by decrease in in the number of the worker. If wages rise, supply of labour will be high. Competition among workers will not only bring down wages but also keep some labourers out of employment. This is based on Mill's notion that" Demand for commodities is not demand for labourers." It means income invested as advances of wages to labour creates employment and not income spent on consumer goods.nAn increase in consumption will mean a decline in investment. So increase in investment leads to increase in the wage fund and economic progress.

Rate of Capital Accumulation



Acccording to Mill the rate of capital accumulation depends upon: (1) "the amount of fund from which saving can be made" or" the size of the net produce of the industry "and (2) "the strength of disposition to save. "Capital is the result of savings, and the savings come from the "abstinence from present consumption for the sake of future goods". Although capital is the result of saving , it is nevertheless consumed. This means savings is spending. Since saving depends on the net produce of the industry , they increase with an increase in profits and rent which goes into making the net produce. On the other hand the strength of the diposition to save depends upon (1) the rate of profit and (2)the desire to save or what Mill called "effective desire of acccumulation." For Mill, profits depends on cost of labour. So rate of profits is the ratio of profits to wages. When profits rise or wages fall, the rate of profits increases which in turn increases the rate of capital accumulation. Similarly , it is the desire to save which tends to increase the rate of capital accumulation.

Rate of Profit


According to Mill, the ultimate tendency is an economy is for the rate of profit to decline due to diminishing returns in agriculture and increase in population at a Malthusian rate.

Major publications

Sortable table
Title Date Source
"Two Letters on the Measure of Value" 1822 "The Traveller"
"Questions of Population" 1823 "Black Dwarf"
"War Expenditure" 1824 Westminster Review
Westminster Review
The Westminster Review was a quarterly British publication. Established in 1823 as the official organ of the Philosophical Radicals, it was published from 1824 to 1914. James Mill was one of the driving forces behind the liberal journal until 1828....

"Quarterly Review – Political Economy" 1825 Westminster Review
"Review of Miss Martineau's Tales" 1830 Examiner
"The Spirit of the Age" 1831 Examiner
"Use and Abuse of Political Terms" 1832
"What is Poetry" 1833, 1859
"Rationale of Representation" 1835
"De Tocqueville on Democracy in America [i]" 1835
"State of Society In America" 1836
"Civilization" 1836
"Essay on Bentham" 1838
"Essay on Coleridge" 1840
"Essays On Government" 1840
"De Tocqueville on Democracy in America [ii]" 1840
A System of Logic
A System of Logic
A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and Inductive is an 1843 book by English philosopher John Stuart Mill. In this work, he formulated the five principles of inductive reasoning that are known as Mill's methods.-References:...

 
1843
Essays on Some Unsettled Questions of Political Economy
Essays on Some Unsettled Questions of Political Economy
Essays on Some Unsettled Questions of Political Economy is a treatise on political economics by John Stuart Mill. Walras' law, a principle in general equilibrium theory named in honour of Léon Walras, was first expressed by Mill in this treatise....

 
1844
"Claims of Labour" 1845 Edinburgh Review
Edinburgh Review
The Edinburgh Review, founded in 1802, was one of the most influential British magazines of the 19th century. It ceased publication in 1929. The magazine took its Latin motto judex damnatur ubi nocens absolvitur from Publilius Syrus.In 1984, the Scottish cultural magazine New Edinburgh Review,...

The Principles of Political Economy: with some of their applications to social philosophy  1848
"The Negro Question" 1850 Fraser's Magazine
"Reform of the Civil Service" 1854
Dissertations and Discussions 1859
A Few Words on Non-intervention
A Few Words on Non-Intervention
A Few Words on Non-Intervention is a short essay by the philosopher, politician and economist, John Stuart Mill. It was written in 1859 in the context of the construction of the Suez Canal and the recent Crimean War...

 
1859
On Liberty
On Liberty
On Liberty is a philosophical work by British philosopher John Stuart Mill. It was a radical work to the Victorian readers of the time because it supported individuals' moral and economic freedom from the state....

 
1859
'Thoughts on Parliamentary Reform 1859
Considerations on Representative Government
Considerations on Representative Government
Considerations on Representative Government is the title of a book by John Stuart Mill published in 1861. As the title suggests, it is an argument for representative government, the ideal form of government in Mill's opinion.-External links:...

 
1861
"Centralisation" 1862 Edinburgh Review
"The Contest in America" 1862 Harper's Magazine
Harper's Magazine
Harper's Magazine is a monthly magazine of literature, politics, culture, finance, and the arts, with a generally left-wing perspective. It is the second-oldest continuously published monthly magazine in the U.S. . The current editor is Ellen Rosenbush, who replaced Roger Hodge in January 2010...

Utilitarianism
Utilitarianism (book)
John Stuart Mill's book Utilitarianism is a philosophical defense of utilitarianism in ethics. The essay first appeared as a series of three articles published in Fraser's Magazine in 1861; the articles were collected and reprinted as a single book in 1863...

 
1863
An Examination of Sir William Hamilton
Sir William Hamilton, 9th Baronet
Sir William Hamilton, 9th Baronet was a Scottish metaphysician.-Early life:He was born in Glasgow. He was from an academic family, including Robert Hamilton, the economist...

's Philosophy
1865
Auguste Comte
Auguste Comte
Isidore Auguste Marie François Xavier Comte , better known as Auguste Comte , was a French philosopher, a founder of the discipline of sociology and of the doctrine of positivism...

 and Positivism
1865
Inaugural Address at St. Andrews – Rectorial Inaugural Address at the University of St. Andrews, concerning the value of culture 1867
"Speech In Favor of Capital Punishment" 1868
England and Ireland 1868
"Thornton on Labor and its Claims" 1869 Fortnightly Review
The Subjection of Women
The Subjection of Women
The Subjection of Women is the title of an essay written by John Stuart Mill in 1869, possibly jointly with his wife Harriet Taylor Mill, stating an argument in favour of equality between the sexes...

 
1869
Chapters and Speeches on the Irish Land Question 1870
On Nature 1874
Autobiography of John Stuart Mill 1873
Three Essays on Religion 1874
On Social Freedom
On Social Freedom
On Social Freedom: or the Necessary Limits of Individual Freedom Arising Out of the Conditions of Our Social Life is an essay regarding individual and societal freedom written by British philosopher John Stuart Mill. For some thirty odd years after his death, the essay was among other possessions...

: or the Necessary Limits of Individual Freedom Arising Out of the Conditions of Our Social Life
1907 "Oxford and Cambridge Review"
"Notes on N.W. Senior's Political Economy" 1945 Economica

See also


  • List of liberal theorists
  • Mill's Methods
    Mill's Methods
    Mill's Methods are five methods of induction described by philosopher John Stuart Mill in his 1843 book A System of Logic. They are intended to illuminate issues of causation.-Direct method of agreement:...

  • Women's suffrage in the United Kingdom
    Women's suffrage in the United Kingdom
    Women's suffrage in the United Kingdom as a national movement began in 1872. Women were not prohibited from voting in the United Kingdom until the 1832 Reform Act and the 1835 Municipal Corporations Act...


Mill's works




Secondary works




Further information