- Series: Law, Legislation, and Liberty
- Paperback: 191 pages
- Publisher: University of Chicago Press; unknown edition (February 15, 1978)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0226320863
- ISBN-13: 978-0226320861
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 8.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 10 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #695,164 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Law, Legislation and Liberty, Volume 1: Rules and Order unknown Edition
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From the Back Cover
Rules and Order constructs the framework necessary for a critical analysis of prevailing theories of justice and of the conditions which a constitution securing personal liberty would have to satisfy.
About the Author
F. A. Hayek (1899–1992), recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1991 and co-winner of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics in 1974, was a pioneer in monetary theory and a leading proponent of classical liberalism in the twentieth century. He taught at the University of London, the University of Chicago, and the University of Freiburg.
Top customer reviews
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I read the whole thing, starting before chapter 1. I used to skip prefaces and introductory remarks, but have started making a point of reading everything.... including pre-prefaces in books that have been published in multiple printings over the years. I am in the process of reading it again, as I want to study it carefully before moving on. I was able to "get it" on the first reading, but I want to be able to draw on details later without looking things up. (I actually started with reading part of the 3rd book out of sequence, and was impressed.)
I was somewhat surprised to learn that the concept of evolution did not start in biology with Darwin, but was borrowed and adapted by him. I was also interested by the idea that there are 2 significantly different concepts of " rational" & some very "rational" people could have their concept of "rational" traced back to a form of Intelligent Design (applied outside of biology). The atheists among them would be blustering at the very notion!
He starts with some very basic and obvious things, but which have implications beyond what casual thought may bring up. He also traces the history of some ideas and how they developed over time. Much that we take for granted as true, or have built part of our modern world upon can be shown to be built on a flawed foundation. If that foundation is false, then what is built on it is at risk ...not simply of collapsing under its own weight, but of leading us on dangerous paths marked as "safe". He presents a compelling case, carefully and painstakingly built up. Parts of it may be described as necessarily dry, other sections are more interesting and all of it is well worth the read.
Other books to recommend:
Six Great Ideas by Mortimer J. Adler
these are more biassed but very informative whether you agree
or are doing opposition research:
Liberalism by Von Mises
Progressivism: a primer on the idea destroying America by James Ostrowski
The Pity Party by William Voegeli
If you read We The People by Charles Murray Red the introduction as well. If you have leanings right or libertarian, you will be discouraged at first, but he has interesting ideas as well. It is one thing to tell you that your chosen tactics cannot be effective and why, and another to offer an alternative. Not perfect - nothing is. Part of it hurt to read, because it said things that I couldn't disagree with, but wanted to.
In this first volume of Law, Liberty, and Legislation Hayek spells out the difference between general rules of conduct and policy that consciously aims at particular ends. Law, as a set of general rules of conduct, are essential to societal spontaneous order. Private law is, contrary to what it might seem, more important to securing a free and prosperous spontaneous order than is public law. Hayek became an economist by reading Carl Menger's "Principles". We can see Menger's influence all through this book. This is Austrian economics applied to law.
Law Liberty and Legislation was intended to complete the case that Hayek made for classical liberalism in The Constitution of Liberty. This trilogy combines with the Constitution of Liberty to make a powerful case for strictly limited government and free enterprise. You should read The Constitution of Liberty before starting this trilogy, but be sure to read both. Hayek's analysis of spontaneous order and government planning is highly relevant. The collapse of the USSR might have made it seem that proponents of free social order had won. But it is all too obvious that the drive for "social justice" is gaining ground. Read Hayek along with Nozick and Buchanan. These ideas are vitally important.
F.A. Hayek formed the view, which he articulates in Law, Legislation and Liberty, that the social order is produced by a complex array of institutions and behavioral norms, which have evolved and endure because they work. The Fatal Conceit of modern planners is to presume that the social order could be easily rearranged; but in fact the rationality of human planners is far more limited than the evolutionary ‘wisdom' that inheres in the complex rules of the free society.