Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature and Other Essays

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Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature and Other Essays represents some of libertarian anarchist Murray Rothbard's most advanced and radical theorizing on topics impacting human liberty. Appearing first in 1974, this volume looks beyond conventional left-right thinking and hence contributes to the groundwork for the current intellectual challenge against centralized social and economic management.

The book's title comes from the lead essay, which argues that egalitarian theory always results in a politics of statist control because it is founded on revolt against the ontological structure of reality itself. According to Rothbard in this lead essay, statist intellectuals attempt to replace what exists with a Romantic image of an idealized primitive state of nature, an ideal which cannot and should not be achieved, according to Rothbard. The implications of this point are worked out on topics such as market economics, child rights, environmentalism, feminism, foreign policy, redistribution and others.

Roy Childs writes in the Foreword:

For until Rothbard's work is carefully studied by every advocate of liberty, the value of his contributions to the libertarian system cannot be fully appreciated and, moreover, the unity and true historical context of libertarianism will not even be fully grasped.

Table of contents[edit]

  • Prefaces
    • Introduction to the Second Edition, by David Gordon (2000)
    • Introduction to the First Edition, by Murray Rothbard (1974)
    • Foreword to the 1974 Edition, by Roy A. Childs, Jr. (Full text in HTML)
  • Egalitarianism as a Revolt Against Nature (Full chapter text in HTML format
  • Left and Right: The Prospects for Liberty (Full chapter text in HTML format, slightly edited)
  • The Anatomy of the State (Full chapter text in HTML format)
  • Justice and Property Rights
  • War, Peace, and the State
  • The Fallacy of the Public Sector
  • Kid Lib
  • The Great Women's Liberation Issue: Setting it Straight
  • Conservation in the Free Market
  • The Meaning of Revolution
  • National Liberation
  • Anarcho-Communism
  • The Spooner-Tucker Doctrine: An Economist's View
  • Ludwig von Mises and the Paradigm for Our Age
  • Why Be Libertarian?
  • Freedom, Inequality, Primitivism, and the Division of Labor (Full chapter text in HTML format) Link also includes a 6-part postscript (Introduction and parts I-V) written circa 1991.

Publishing history[edit]