Four Conceptions of Freedom

(These readings are part of Activity 8: Four conceptions of freedom.)

Freedom Declaration: Freedom and Slave Emancipation

(Part of Four Conceptions of Freedom.) “Freedom for the ex-slaves would mean the freedom to possess and till their own soil, to labour for themselves and their families, with no constraints other than their own self-defined needs, and to sell and dispose of the products of their labour in their own interests” (Carolyn Fick, 2007) “The Haitian Revolution has often been described as the largest and most successful slave rebellion in the Western Hemisphere.

Freedom Declaration: Rights and Equality

(Part of Four Conceptions of Freedom.) Introduction The central theme in this conception of freedom is a commitment to the individual and the wish to build a society in which people can satisfy their interests and achieve their desires. In this framework, human beings are first and foremost, individuals who are endowed with the ability to reason. All people are born with rights which they hold by virtue of being human beings.

Freedom Declaration: Freedom as Independence

(Part of Four Conceptions of Freedom.) In the struggle against the political, social, economic and cultural conditions of colonialism, anti-colonial movements and their theorists imagined ways to change, re-order and transcend. These anti-colonial imaginations informed struggles in the different waves of decolonisation. These three waves are as follows: The 1st phase of decolonisation (1776 to 1826) brought about the national independence of most of the European colonies in North, Caribbean and South America (‘New World’)

Freedom Declaration: Social and Economic Freedom

(Part of Four Conceptions of Freedom.) The socialist movement like other people’s movements has a heavily-contested history. In his book Main Currents of Marxism, Leszek Kolakowski claims that the ideas of socialism were born in the 1830s in communitarian and co-operative movements in France and Britain led by Henri Saint-Simon and Robert Owen. Afro-American scholar and activist Cedric J. Robinson contests this and argues that socialism has a longer history.