Author(s): Clive Hamilton
The Freedom Paradox is a radical reconsideration of the meaning of freedom in the modern world.
Despite all the freedoms we now enjoy, the citizens of rich countries do not appear to be the contented, creative and flourishing individuals that were envisaged by the liberation movements of the 1960s and 1970s. Nor has the extension of political rights to all groups in society or free-market libertarianism brought promised personal fulfilment. Instead, the space created by the freedoms won has been filled by another form of coercion, one that deprives people of a hitherto neglected form of liberty.
In what will be seen as a highly controversial stance, Clive Hamilton argues that our 'inner freedom', our very human capacity for considered will, the very ethical basis of our society, has been compromised by our relentless focus on impulse and immediate gratification. Drawing on the great metaphysical philosophers, Hamilton develops a new ethics for our times. He argues that true inner freedom and acting according to moral law are one and the same, and essential to reaching psychological maturity.
The Freedom Paradox is a brave and challenging work which goes to the heart of what it means to be human. First published 2008.