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A False Tree of LibertyHuman Rights in Radical Thought$
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Susan Marks

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780199675456

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199675456.001.0001

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(p.241) 10 Afterword
A False Tree of Liberty

Susan Marks

Oxford University Press

If the ‘Paineite’ approach associates the rights of man with popular sovereignty, together with social welfare and decent wages, the ‘Spencean’ approach insists that political revolution needs to be accompanied by social revolution, and remedial measures by efforts to seek out and transform the roots of injustice. It is, of course, the former that has been most important in shaping the course of history (including the history of human rights), and that is most familiar today. This Afterword gives brief consideration to the question of what it might mean to recover the Spencean alternative in a world of ‘new enclosures’ and ‘new commons’.

Keywords:   human rights, human rights history, new enclosures, commons, Thomas Paine, Thomas Spence

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