Hayek's Social and Political Thought

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9780198279167: Hayek's Social and Political Thought
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Revered by some as the most important twentieth century theorist of free society, Friedrich A. Hayek has been reviled by others as a mere reactionary. Impartial throughout, the author offers a clear exposition and balanced assessment that judges Hayek's theory by its own lights. The author argues that the key to understanding Hayek lies in an appreciation of the proper link between descriptive social science and normative political theory. He probes the idea of a spontaneous order and other notions central to Hayek's thought, and concludes that they are unable to provide the "scientific" foundation Hayek seeks for his liberalism. By drawing out the distinctive character of Hayek's thought, the author presents a new and more accurate picture of this important social and political theorist.

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About the Author:

Roland Kley is a Research Fellow at the Swiss National Science Foundation and teaches politics at the University of St. Gallen.

Review:


"Balanced and thorough....Kley's study incorporates but goes considerably beyond recent Hayek scholarship to a detailed, current critique of the internal contradictions in Hayek's liberal ideology."--Choice


"This is a very well-organized, rigorously argued work...which in my opinion will have to be taken into account by any subsequent discussion of Hayek's work, especially whether that work is valuable, or superior to other efforts, in helping to understand the institutions of human community life."--The Review of Politics


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