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Working paper

Liberty before Liberalism in Russia

Kaploun V.
The paper analyses the concept of liberty (svoboda) in the context of certain forms of Russian political, social, and ethical thought that were characteristic of the Russian Enlightenment intellectual movement (early l770s – late 1820s). Liberty belongs to the spectrum of concepts (alongside “society”, “civil society”, “nation”, etc.) that have laid foundation for the modern Russian political language, as well as for the thought style of Russian hommes de lettres of the period. The paper aims at demonstrating that this Enlightenment thought style is a constituent part of the European intellectual tradition of civic republicanism, integrating as it does its key topics.