Which is the more liberal stance in today’s world: defending free competition or resisting the new web oligopolies? In an increasingly multi-ethnic society, what is the role of the liberal value of tolerance? Does liberalism defend a rigidly limited conception of the State, or does it hold that public powers should be used to offer people more opportunities? Ten years ago many people called themselves “liberal”; today far fewer do so. But even among those who continue to use this adjective, the nature of liberalism is controversial. Which proposals and attitudes should a liberal adopt to address the challenges of the contemporary age? It is not only a question of state vs. market, insofar as – within liberal thought – profoundly different sensitivities face off against one another in a variety of contexts: rights and responsibilities; the licit and the illicit; the individual and society. In this book, two authors with different intellectual histories challenge each other in a passionate duel on what liberalism means today.
Emanuele Felice teaches Economics of Culture and Economic History at the IULM University of Languages and Communication in Milan.
Alberto Mingardi teaches History of Political Thought at the IULM University of Languages and Communication in Milan and heads the Bruno Leoni Institute.