Chapter

Socialism and the New Liberalism<sup>1</sup>

Ben Jackson

in Liberalism as Ideology

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199600670
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738203 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199600670.003.0003
Socialism and the New Liberalism1

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Freeden’s work on the history of British liberal thought has famously highlighted the ideological links between liberals and socialists in Britain during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Although Freeden’s account has much to commend it, this chapter suggests that his focus on the influence of British liberalism on socialists should be balanced by an appreciation of the corresponding influence of British socialism on liberals. To make this case, the chapter examines the attitudes of new liberal intellectuals to the social ownership and control of industry. It investigates the ideas about social ownership found in the writings of J. A. Hobson and L. T. Hobhouse before the First World War; it musters evidence of left-liberal enthusiasm for industrial democracy in the years following 1918; and it outlines the serious consideration given to socialist planning by William Beveridge, the apparent epitome of a centrist liberal, in the 1930s and 1940s.

Keywords: new liberalism; social ownership; socialism; industrial democracy; L. T. Hobhouse; J. A. Hobson; William Beveridge

Chapter.  9042 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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