Victor Prosper Considerant
|Born||12 October 1808|
|Died||27 December 1893 (aged 85)|
|Era||19th century philosophy|
Considerant was born in Salins-les-Bains, Jura and studied at the École Polytechnique (1826 diploma). He entered the French army as an engineer, rising to the rank of captain. However, he resigned his commission in 1831, in order to devote himself to advancing the doctrines of Fourier. Subsequently, working as a musician, he collaborated with Fourier on newspapers. He edited the journals La Phalanstère and La Phalange. On the death of Fourier in 1837, Considerant became the acknowledged head of the movement, and took charge of La Phalange.
Considerant wrote much in advocacy of his principles, of which the most important is La Destinée Sociale. He authored Democracy Manifesto, which preceded by five years the similar Communist Manifesto by Marx and Engels. Considerant defined the notion of a "right to (have) work", which would be one of the main ideas of French socialists in the 1848 Revolutions. He is also known for having devised the proportional representation system. He also advocated such measures of "direct democracy" (a term he coined) as referendum and recall.
The failure of an insurrection against Louis Napoléon obliged Considerant to go into exile in Belgium in June 1849. On an invitation by Albert Brisbane and helped by Jean-Baptiste Godin, between 1855 and 1857, with his wife, Julie, and his mother-in-law, Clarisse Vigoureux, he founded the colony La Réunion in Texas on Fourier's principles.
He died in Paris in 1893.
Contrary to a common error, his name is not written Considérant as he explained: "... there is no acute accent on my e. I have fought in vain for more than sixty years ever since my name was printed to defend it [from the accent]!"
- public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Considérant, Victor Prosper". Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 6 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 978. One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the
- Fairchild, S. L. (2003-01-01). "Fourierism's Feminine Defender and Colonial Pioneer: Clarisse Vigoureux". Romance Quarterly. 50 (3): 186–194. doi:10.1080/08831150309601976. ISSN 0883-1157. S2CID 162389451.
- Louis Bertrand, Histoire de la démocratie et du socialisme en Belgique depuis 1830, Brussels, éd. Dechenne, t. 1, p. 280, 1906
- Jonathan Beecher, Victor Considérant and the Rise and Fall of French Romantic Socialism. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2000.
- Carl J. Guarneri, The Utopian Alternative: Fourierism in Nineteenth-Century America. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1991.
- Works by Victor Prosper Considerant at LibriVox (public domain audiobooks)
- Principles of Socialism: Manifesto of Nineteenth Century Democracy by Considerant in PDF format