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The goal of political liberalism, the first incarnation of liberalism, as an ideology and movement was to elevate, protect, and enforce the notions that there is (a) nothing sacred in nature and (b) nothing else in society other than “human being” or “Man.” The political liberals were atheists or deists who resisted all notions of the existence or participation of God in public life.

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Stirner argues in The Ego and Its Own that Ludwig Feuerbach and Bruno Bauer articulated the most advanced and clearest statements on the cultural and ideological characteristics of modernity, even though both were radical critics of Christianity and Hegelianism. Both Feuerbach and Bauer were principled philosophic rebels who sought to overthrow the domination of culture and philosophy by Christian theology. Both paid dearly for their radicalism. Bauer was incarcerated for his political activism.

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Everyday life in antiquity was characterized by the domination of individuals and societies by nature, or the harsh, material, physical realities of the world . But everyday life was supported by a spiritual world that offered a respite from nature. The conflict between the practical necessity of extracting food, clothing, and shelter from nature, and the nether world of spirits, ghosts, and specters, was replicated in philosophic and religious discourse. Stirner argues that the antagonism between the practical orientation of humanity’s interaction with nature, and the fantasy inherent in its interaction with spirits and the heavens, was expressed in the conflict between the Sophists and Socrates.

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Most of what is known about the person who became “Max Stirner” was discovered and collected in the late nineteenth century by his biographer, the Scottish-German novelist, poet, and anarchist writer John Henry Mackay.

Mackay laments in his biography that very little is known about Max Stirner. Mackay regrets that he was able to gather only the “bare facts” about Stirner’s life, especially before the publication of The Ego alld Its Own.

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Riferendosi inoltre alla non asservibile tra svalutazione nietzscheana dei valori Bataille afferma:

 «Che i valori rovesciati non possano essere ridotti al valore di utilità, è un principio d’importanza vitale così bruciante da suscitare con esso tutto ciò che la vita comporta di volontà tempestosa da vincere.

Al di fuori di questa precisa risoluzione, questo insegnamento dà luogo soltanto alle incoerenze o ai tradimenti di coloro che pretendono di tenerne conto. L’asservimento tende a inglobare l’intera esistenza umana ed è il destino di questa esistenza libera che è in causa».

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Inner experience not being able to have principles either in a dogma (a moral attitude), or in science (knowledge can be neither its goal nor its origin), or in a search for enriching states (an experimental, aesthetic attitude), it cannat have any other cancern nor other goal than itself.

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Humane liberalism is the label Stirner gives to the humanism or “critical philosophy” of thinkers like Feuerbach and Bruno and Edgar Bauer. In the progression of modernist or l iberal thought, Stirner identifies humane l iberalism or “criticism” as the “highest presupposition,” or the apex and most advanced, predictable outcome of modernism.

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The liberal state is inherently unstable because of the contradiction between its professed values of equality, freedom, and universal welfare against the harsh reality of class inequality.

The instability caused by class inequality provides a foundation for supplanting political liberalism with social liberalism, or the replacement of classical liberalism with socialism and communism.


Under political liberalism, persons are theoretically equal under the law, but their possessions are not. The inequality of possessions threatens social stability and the fulfillment of the humanist agenda since the proletariat may decide to resist the class structure of political liberalism.


Social liberalism is the term Stirner gives to the socialist, communist, and collectivist anarchist theories and movements that attempt to organize the working class and overthrow the regime of political liberalism. The writings and advocacy of pre-Marxian collectivists such as Moses Hess, Williamm Weitling, and Pierre-Joseph Proudhon were particularly important statements of social liberalism at the time Stirner prepared The Ego and Its Own .


In Stirner’s dialectical egoist critique, political libera lism responds to the decay of monarchy and the aristocracy by arguing that no one must give orders, no one must command except a government which derives its legitimacy from popular sovereignty.


Social liberal ism responds to the inequality of classes by arguing that no one must own anything. Under the regime of social liberalism, not only does the state obtain a monopoly in the legitimate use of force, society alone obtains the right to possess property.


Social liberalism abhors the use of state power to protect a person’s property since property enforces social boundaries on the possession and use of material objects. Political liberalism supports the right to own property and enforces this right through the use or the threat of the use of force.


The person who wants “more things” and discovers that others have “more things,” also finds that access to “more things” is under the control of other people. The contradiction of political liberalism is that no one is supposed to be inferior. No one is supposed to be able to command others.


The lordship-bondage relationship should have been destroyed . But some people have what other people would like to have. A “circuitously restored inequality” appeared under the regime of political liberalism.


The freedom of individuals from the domination by others falls short under political liberalism because private property means that some persons have the right to command and control the lives of others. Social liberalism intends to build on the accomplishments of the democratic revolutions by extending the principles of democracy and equality into the economy and the social class system.


The solution of the social liberals is to discredit justifications for private property and to have the democratic state assert ownership of property through coercion. The solution of the social liberals, Stirner taunts, is forbid anyone from having anything any longer. Reduce everyone to the status of a pauper. Dispossess everyone of everything. Only the state, acting on behalf of society, can legitimately own property. The solution propounded by the social liberals is to eliminate all legitimate boundaries between “mine” and “thine.” All property is to be impersonal. No individual can legitimately assert or claim ownership over anything.



The state of social liberalism is tasked with creating “ragamuffins” and “nullities.” Persons are to become “ragamuffins together.” Society is to become a “ragamuffin crew.” The purpose of the political class is to enforce “ragamuffinism” throughout the nation.


For Stirner, this was the second great robbery of the personal in the interest of humanity. The second robbery is the appropriation of the possessions of individuals by the state on behalf of society. In the theory and practice of social liberalism, the liberal democratic state is obliged to appropriate possessions to ensure that people are not unequal in their possessions. Social liberalism intends to abolish class inequality, the inequality of possessions, the distinction between rich and poor, bourgeois and proletarian.


Stirner says that this is achieved through the impoverishment or pauperization of all. Property is taken from individuals and surrendered to the ghostly society.









Pessimismo e nichilismo vanno a braccetto, ma solo in Albert Caraco raggiungono quella tonalità oscura che impedisce ogni speranza e chiude ogni spiraglio d’illusione. Dalle sue pagine si esce guariti da ogni miraggio sul mondo, preparati per il macello prossimo futuro – e definitivamente redenti da ogni viziosa idea di soavità dell’uomo e della realtà. Rispetto a lui, i grandi pessimisti sono roba dolciastra, profeti zuccherati, voci infiacchite dalla chimera che “l’uomo ce la farà”.

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