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The Correspondence of Jeremy Bentham, Volume 1

Schofield, P (Ed). (2017) The Correspondence of Jeremy Bentham, Volume 1. [Book]. UCL Press: London. Green open access

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Abstract

The first five volumes of the Correspondence of Jeremy Bentham contain over 1,300 letters written both to and from Bentham over a 50-year period, beginning in 1752 (aged three) with his earliest surviving letter to his grandmother, and ending in 1797 with correspondence concerning his attempts to set up a national scheme for the provision of poor relief. Against the background of the debates on the American Revolution of 1776 and the French Revolution of 1789, to which he made significant contributions, Bentham worked first on producing a complete penal code, which involved him in detailed explorations of fundamental legal ideas, and then on his panopticon prison scheme. Despite developing a host of original and ground-breaking ideas, contained in a mass of manuscripts, he published little during these years, and remained, at the close of this period, a relatively obscure individual. Nevertheless, these volumes reveal how the foundations were laid for the remarkable rise of Benthamite utilitarianism in the early nineteenth century. Bentham’s early life is marked by his extraordinary precociousness, but also family tragedy: by the age of 10 he had lost five infant siblings and his mother. The letters in this volume document his difficult relationship with his father and his increasing attachment to his surviving younger brother Samuel, his education, his interest in chemistry and botany, and his committing himself to a life of philosophy and legal reform.

Type: Book
Title: The Correspondence of Jeremy Bentham, Volume 1
ISBN-13: 9781911576037
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.14324/111.9781911576037
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.14324/111.9781911576037
Additional information: This book is published under a Creative Commons 4.0 International license (CC BY 4.0). This license allows you to share, copy, distribute and transmit the work; to adapt the work and to make commercial use of the work providing attribution is made to the authors (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work). Attribution should include the following information: Timothy L.S. Sprigge (ed.), The Correspondence of Jeremy Bentham. Vol.1: 1752–76. The Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham. Edited by J.H.Burns. London, UCL Press, 2017. https://doi.org/10.14324/111.9781911576037 Further details about CC BY licenses are available at http://creativecommons.org/ licenses/
Keywords: Jeremy Bentham, Utilitarianism, Philosophy, Legal thought
UCL classification: UCL > School of Arts and Social Sciences
UCL > School of Arts and Social Sciences > Faculty of Laws
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1558740
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