Henry Noel Brailsford: neglected cosmopolitan

Abstract

Brailsford’s international political thought has contemporary resonance, not least for his contribution to a normative theory that fell out of fashion in the 1950s but has recently been revived. As is generally the case among international thinkers of the twentieth century, Brailsford’s work betrays the Eurocentrism which reflected his intellectual environment. He recognized this trait in his thought and made a self-critical effort to rectify it. Never able entirely to shake of the misperceptions and misunderstandings that undermined and limited his cosmopolitanism, he nevertheless made progress in the effort at self-enlightenment. With a distinctive view of human nature and a belief in the value of non-authoritarian education, he was confident that people (including himself) could liberate themselves from ignorance, change their nature and cooperate in a cosmopolitan international system.

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Lamb, P. Henry Noel Brailsford: neglected cosmopolitan. Int Polit 54, 104–117 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1057/s41311-017-0022-3

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Keywords

  • Cosmopolitanism
  • Normative theory
  • Human nature
  • Socialism
  • League of Nations