Results are out! Find what you need...fast. Get quick advice or join the chat
Hey there Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

Types of liberalism

Announcements Posted on
    • Thread Starter
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I'm getting very confused about the different types or strands of liberalism, and what they are called. I'm going to list all the types of liberalism that are in my notes and various revision guides that I think I need to know for the exam, and can someone please tell me if these are all different types of liberalism, and that I am not confusing names etc.

    Classical liberalism
    New liberalism
    Modern liberalism
    Contemporary liberalism
    Social liberalism
    Old liberalism
    Neo-liberalism
    Utilitarianism
    Social darwinism and libertarianism

    I'm revising for AQA Unit 4 btw. Thank you!
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by stranger101)
    I'm getting very confused about the different types or strands of liberalism, and what they are called. I'm going to list all the types of liberalism that are in my notes and various revision guides that I think I need to know for the exam, and can someone please tell me if these are all different types of liberalism, and that I am not confusing names etc.

    Classical liberalism
    New liberalism
    Modern liberalism
    Contemporary liberalism
    Social liberalism
    Old liberalism
    Neo-liberalism
    Utilitarianism
    Social darwinism and libertarianism

    I'm revising for AQA Unit 4 btw. Thank you!

    From my understanding:

    Classical liberalism - Limited govt in the economy and social sphere
    New liberalism - Synonym for Social liberalism
    Modern liberalism - As above
    Contemporary liberalism - As above
    Social liberalism - Either the application of liberal beliefs to the social sphere OR an ideology that combines this with moderate left-wing policies like taxpayer funded healthcare
    Old liberalism - Classical liberalism
    Neo-liberalism - Belief in the free market, more prevelant in the 80s and 90s
    Utilitarianism - 'The greatest happiness for the greatest number'
    Social darwinism and libertarianism - Libertarianism is extreme classical liberalism, arguing for a very limited state, usually just to provide police forces, a legal system and a military. A 'night watchman' state.
    Social darwinism - A nazi belief, that stronger races should destroy the weak. Very opposed to liberalism.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Classical liberalism = laissez faire in the C19th - the ideas of Adam Smith about the self-regulating market and of Locke about the 'nightwatchman state'.

    New Liberalism = the Liberal govt of 1906 - 1915. Brought in welfare reforms in order to alleviate the problems of the poorest in society.

    Modern Liberalism = That could mean many things

    Contemporarry Liberalism = I take it that means liberalism TODAY

    Social liberalism = the ideas of Beveridge and others who have expressed concern for the poor as well as support for welfare, NHS and free education etc. Draws heavily upon social democracy but has an individidualist as opposed to collectivist outlook.

    Old liberalism = ?

    Neo-liberalism = refers to the rebirth of classical liberal economics in the 1970s onwards. Often even more extreme than the ideas of Adam Smith i.e. belief that public goods can be provided by the market

    Utilitarianism = philosophy of classical liberal Jeremy Bentham i.e. his belief that unregulated free market will provide 'the greatest good for the greatest number'.

    Social darwinism = Part of classical liberal ideology. Belief that the poor people are only poor because they are lazy.

    libertarianism = opposite to authoritarianism. Often used to refer to those who support free-market economics

    These should be about accurate. But I do edexcel and took my exam on this in january so its all pretty much gone out of my head!
    • Thread Starter
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Ok thank you for help!

    So if I was writing revision notes, would I class all of these types of liberalism as different, or could I group them together in terms of being fairly similar.
    For example:

    *Old Liberal ideas:
    -Classical liberalism
    -Utilitarianism
    -Neo-liberalism
    -Social Darwinism
    -Libertarianism
    (Basis/inspiration of Modern Liberalism, no longer in mainstream use)

    *Modern Liberal ideas i.e. Social Liberalism
    (In mainstream use today by Lib Dems etc.)

    Apologies if the questions seem a bit stupid, I'm just finding it difficult to get my head around how I would go about tacking this whole topic in terms of revision. Thanks again!
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Well the starkest difference is between classical/neo-liberalism and new/modern/social liberalism.

    And yes i'd group those things together. Especially as social darwinism and utilitarianism are really only PARTS of classical liberal ideology. But note the timeframes i.e. neoliberalism is similar in ideas to classical liberalism but over 100 years appart.

    I think its hard to say that the lib dems are social liberals because they have had to adapt to the neo-liberal revolution...

Reply

Submit reply

Register

Thanks for posting! You just need to create an account in order to submit the post
  1. this can't be left blank
    that username has been taken, please choose another Forgotten your password?
  2. this can't be left blank
    this email is already registered. Forgotten your password?
  3. this can't be left blank

    6 characters or longer with both numbers and letters is safer

  4. this can't be left empty
    your full birthday is required
  1. By joining you agree to our Ts and Cs, privacy policy and site rules

  2. Slide to join now Processing…

Updated: May 11, 2009
New on TSR

Find out what year 11 is like

Going into year 11? Students who did it last year share what to expect.

Article updates
Reputation gems:
You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.