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'Review and Discussion Questions'

John Stuart Mill - On Liberty
-Explain the connection between individuality and liberty.
- Why does Mill think that false speech should be tolerated or even encouraged

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John Stuart Mill
1. Explain the connection between individuality and liberty. Mill defines liberty as the capacity for people to take care of themselves. Mill uses the term “self-protection.” Mill thinks that individual in society is most free when he is able to take care of himself and thus more likely to be happy. In this way, “liberty” for Mill means the freedom to “do” something in society. Mill rejects the idea that liberty is merely from responsibility. For example, the kind of individual free Mill is talking about is the kind of freedom that we see in people who take responsibility for their own happiness. Mill thinks that government should give this kind of freedom to its people rather than controlling them by means of oppression. The individual is “sovereign” over “his own mind and body”. Therefore the connection between liberty and the individual is that the more the individual is free to make his own choices concerning his happiness the more free he or she will be in society and the more society will benefit in the long run....
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