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The Ludwig von Mises Institute

Advancing Austrian Economics, Liberty, and Peace

Advancing the scholarship of liberty in the tradition of the Austrian School

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History of Liberty Seminar

May 26

Auburn, Alabama

"Ideas are the ultimate given of historical inquiry," wrote Ludwig von Mises. But two ideas--the magnificence of human liberty and the destructiveness of statism and socialism--are given short shrift or completely ignored by mainstream historical writing. Glorifying the state's rise, its wars, its welfare, while denigrating opponents of political regimentation, many historians regard "progress" as anything that takes us toward the dreams of Marx and Rousseau. 

But there is another way. Mises, who sought to understand history in light of human action and choice, celebrated the rise of capitalism. Murray N. Rothbard chronicled the errors and crimes of the state. And Lord Acton, working his way from ancient to modern history, took for his guide Rhadamanthus, the avenger of innocent blood. 

In that tradition, the Mises Institute is hosting a summer instructional seminar for students on the History of Liberty. Modeled on our famous economics instructional program, the History of Liberty brings together some of the best historians working today to examine the European and American experience. The program will be sweeping, rigorous, and unfailingly revisionist, as all good history should be. The program ends with a Mündliche Prüfung, an optional exam for an honors certificate.

Schedule Download

Apply now to attend using our online Student Scholarship Application. Deadline for application: May 17, 2002.



M-F: Breakfast, 8:15am; Lecture 1: 9:00-10:00am; Lecture 2: 10:15-11:15am; Lecture 3: 11:30-12:30pm; Lunch: 12:30-1:30pm; Lecture 4: 1:30-2:30pm; Lecture 5: 2:45-3:45pm; Lecture 6: 4:00-5:00pm; Dinner/research: 5:00-7:00pm; Lecture 7: 7:00-8:00pm; Gattis: 8:00-10:00pm.

Sunday, May 26 

  • 10:00am - 7:00pm Central Time, check-in at Commons Dorm
  • 6:00pm bus leaves from Commons Dorm and AU Hotel going to Mises Campus for registration and dinner
  • 7:30: Piano Concert 
  • 8:30pm How to Think about History. Raico 

Monday, May 27

  1. Theory and History. Hulsmann                     
  2. The Rise of the West: The New Paradigm. Raico                      
  3. A Short History of the Idea of Liberty. Gordon                     
  4. Feudalism, Property, and the State. Bassani                      
  5. Rise of the Nation-State. Livingston                      
  6. The Republican Idea. Stromberg                      
  7. Crisis and Leviathan Higgs 

Tuesday, May 28 

  1. Hume and the Critique of the Enlightenment. Livingston                      
  2. Intellectual Origins of Natural Rights. Bassani                      
  3. Colonial America and the American Revolution. Woods                      
  4. The U.S. Constitution. Livingston                      
  5. The Anti-Federalist Tradition. Stromberg                   
  6. The Fall of European Liberalism. Raico                      
  7. Q&A with Faculty 

Wednesday, May 29 

  1. The American System: Clay and the Corruption of Free Enterprise. DiLorenzo                     
  2. The Southern Secession and Reconstruction. Livingston                      
  3. The American Banking Debates. Trask                      
  4. Big Business and Big Government. Higgs                
  5. Lincoln and the Consolidated State. DiLorenzo                      
  6. American Colonialism and the War Against Spain. Stromberg                      
  7. Progressive Era. Woods 

Thursday , May 30 

  1. World War I. Raico                      
  2. Marxism, Bolshevism, and Democratic Socialism. Gordon                      
  3. The New Deal. DiLorenzo                      
  4. History of Taxation in America Higgs                      
  5. Prohibitionism: A History of Failure. Thornton                      
  6. Stalinism, National Socialism and Fascism. DiLorenzo                      
  7.  World War II. Higgs         

Friday, May 31 

  1. The Great Society. Woods                      
  2. The National Security State. Higgs                      
  3. Regulating from the Right: Nixon to Bush. Woods                      
  4. War and the Presidency. Denson                         
  5. The Role of the Intellectuals. Raico                      
  6. Interventionism in the 21st Century: DiLorenzo           
  7. Mündliche Prüfung (optional exams for honors certificate)

Saturday, June 1 

7:00am (Central Time) shuttle leaves Auburn, arrives Atlanta 9:45am (Eastern Time); noon (Central Time) shuttle leaves Auburn, arrives Atlanta 2:45pm (Eastern Time); 5:00pm (Central Time) shuttle leaves Auburn, arrives Atlanta 7:45pm (Eastern Time)


A limited number of Observer spaces are available. The price of $675 includes all meals, lectures, and student materials. The price of housing is $20 per night at the student dorm (double-occupancy), and $72 per night at the Auburn University hotel. And there are many other places to stay as well.  Use this Member Observer registration form.  For questions, email pat@mises.org.


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