by John Stuart Mill ; editor of the text, John M. Robson ; introduction by Joseph Hamburger
John Stuart Mill's political essays are a blend of the practical and the theoretical. In this volume are gathered together those in which the practical emphasis is more moarked; those in which theory is predominant are found in Essays on Politics and Society, Vols XVIII and XIX of the Collected Works. The Essays on England, Ireland, and the Empire are mainly from Mill's early career as a propagandist for the Philosophic Radicals (a term he himself coined). They provide a contemporary running account of British political issues at home and abroad, with a vigorous and sometimes acerbic commentary. Historians as well as political scientists will find interesting details of the view from the radical side, and all students of Mill will welcome the further elucidation of his development. Of special interest are his precocious if tendentious attack on Hume's History of England, and his reactions to Canadian and Irish issues, the latter being the subject of a previously unpublished manuscript. The textual apparatus includes a collation of the manuscript materials and identification of Mill's quotations and references.