Social Progress; An Essay

Paperback | January 11, 2012

byDaniel Greenleaf Thompson

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This historic book may have numerous typos, missing text or index. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. 1889. Not illustrated. Excerpt: ... CHAPTER XIII. THE EXPRESSION OP OPINIONS. In order to find out whether one's opinions are correct or not, it is well to express them. Other people's estimates can then be obtained, comparisons instituted, errors detected, deficiencies supplied. But with the most of mankind the purpose of such expression is not so much to get more light, to revise and correct, as it is to enforce their views. They like to lay down the law and have their auditors accept it. The result of letting others know what we think hence results in discussion essentially polemical, with anxiety on both sides to maintain one's own thesis and to put to rout the antagonist. This is not always profitable, but it induces mutual respect, makes persons aware of their limitations, and develops very frequently some disposition to reconsider, if only to discover more potent and deadly arguments for the next encounter. At any rate intellectual activity is stimulated; and that is a great gain. The effect on all concerned would seem to be salutary. Nevertheless, it has always been a hard matter to secure liberty of expression, or even toleration. It is easy to see why tyrants and absolutists should not want opinions adverse to them to be expressed, because, of course, such expression more or less endangers their domination. It is perfectly logical for the Czar of All the Eussias to establish a censorship over the press and over oral utterances. On his theory of government, he would be very foolish not to exercise it. But there are some people who do not pretend to be supporters of autocracy, who, nevertheless, believe in some such censorship on grounds of general utility. To such, a word is to be said. I do not propose, however, to waste time or space in arguing that liberty of speech would be desirable ...

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This historic book may have numerous typos, missing text or index. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. 1889. Not illustrated. Excerpt: ... CHAPTER XIII. THE EXPRESSION OP OPINIONS. In order to find out whether one's opinions are correct or not, it is well to express them....

Format:PaperbackDimensions:44 pages, 9.69 × 7.44 × 0.09 inPublished:January 11, 2012Publisher:General Books LLCLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0217873480

ISBN - 13:9780217873482

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