Bolzano’s major work on political philosophy is a treatise called On the Best State, which was first drafted around 1830. Despite its title, it is not a merely utopian work. The best state is considered not in order to avoid practical attempts at reform, but to give them a theoretical underpinning and clearer direction. Chapter 3 presents the main points of the political philosophy set out in On the Best State, followed by a consideration of the program for reform that Bolzano had presented in the sermons (Erbauungsreden) he read at San Salvator church and further developed in his lectures on the “science of religion” at the Charles University and in some later essays. In particular, discussion centers on his views on civil disobedience, revolt, enlightenment, and the rights of women, religious minorities, and the Czech-speaking citizens of Bohemia.
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