Frontiers of Law, Political Science and Art

A commentary on 'liberty and security' by 'Conor Gearty'


Dayyab Gillani

At the turn of the seventeenth century, the egalitarian impulse driven by the age of enlightenment induced the democratic shift in the Western world. This egalitarian whim was, at least in principle, rooted in the ideals of liberty and security for all. Despite the uncertainty over the exact meaning of liberty and security, they are universally acknowledged as “positive forces” fundamental to democracy. This book appraises liberty and security at the pre, past and post-democratic levels. The pre-democratic era was characterized by monarchial, authoritarian and totalitarian states, in which liberty and security was openly and characteristically for a “select few”, the elite of the society. The turn of the seventeenth century witnessed the rise of democracy, which primarily emerged to challenge this pre-democratic selective arrangement as ideas of liberty and security for everyone were advanced. The post-democratic era, or as the author calls it „neo-democracy�?? (p. 4) refers to the recent changes in democratic practices with various pre-democratic facets silently crawling their way back in and finding popular acceptance.


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