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What is Property?

Or, an Inquiry into the Principle of Right of Government

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Author: P. J. Proudhon
Published: 1840
Language: English
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 51.3
LoC Category: B
Downloads: 2,746 5778

Contains the famous assertion that ''Property is Theft.''

Show Excerpt

orners of Europe. Such letters are empty, and teach as nothing but theatrical execution and the favorite pose of their writers.

"I will not class among the latter the more prudent and sagacious authors who, when writing to individuals, keep one eye on posterity. We know that many who pursue this method have written long, finished, charming, flattering, and tolerably natural letters. Beranger furnishes us with the best example of this class.

"Proudhon, however, is a man of entirely different nature and habits. In writing, he thinks of nothing but his idea and the person whom he addresses: ad rem et ad hominem. A man of conviction and doctrine, to write does not weary him; to be questioned does not annoy him. When approached, he cares only to know that your motive is not one of futile curiosity, but the love of truth; he assumes you to be serious, he replies, he examines your objections, sometimes verbally, sometimes in writing; for, as he remarks, `if there be some points which correspondence can



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