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Bourgeois Liberty and the Politics of FearFrom Absolutism to Neo-Conservatism$
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Marc Mulholland

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199653577

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199653577.001.0001

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(p.297) Conclusions
Bourgeois Liberty and the Politics of Fear

Marc Mulholland

Oxford University Press

The analytical narrative of the preceding chapters is summarized. This is then examined to see how far it coheres with the idea that bourgeois liberalism tends to recede in proportion to the extent ‘proletarian democracy’ advances. Broadly speaking, it is held to cohere quite well, but with important qualifications. Amongst the most important are these: Will to political power was never a bourgeois characteristic; Bourgeois support for authoritarianism was not always in reaction to challenges from the left; Even as bourgeois radicalism declined, there remained many opportunities for liberal-socialist cooperation; Inter-war fascism was not merely an artefact of bourgeois disillusion with liberty; There are no modern political parties or governments that are ‘purely’ bourgeois; The bourgeoisie relates only indirectly to its ‘vanguard’; The tension between ‘bourgeois liberty’ and ‘proletarian democracy’ remains.

Keywords:   summary, bourgeois revolution, proletarian democracy, Vanguard, bourgeois liberty

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