Search Loading suggestions...

Inventing the Individual

UK Publisher: Allen Lane / Penguin
US Publisher: Harvard University Press

A highly original rethinking of how our moral beliefs were formed and their impact on western society today.

This short but highly ambitious book asks us to rethink the evolution of the ideas on which modern states are built. Larry Siedentop argues that the core of what is now our system of beliefs – liberalism – emerged much earlier than generally recognized, established not in the Renaissance but by the arguments of lawyers and philosophers in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Yet there are large parts of the world – fundamentalist Islam; quasi-capitalist China – where other belief systems flourish and faced with these challenges, understanding our own ideas’ origins is more than ever an important part of knowing who we are.



Sir Larry Siedentop was for three decades Fellow of Keble College and Faculty Lecturer in Political Thought at the University...