Virtual Reading Groups

computer-keyboard-atop-which-a-pair-of-reading-glasses-725x482SFL Virtual Reading Groups give participants the opportunity to explore a set of readings on the intellectual underpinnings of a free society with an instructor who has expertise in the field and a group of similarly interested and qualified students from around the world. By creating a space for active discussion with other intellectually engaged students, led by capable and informed discussion leaders, VRGs give participants a chance to achieve unusual depth and perspective on the classical liberal tradition that could not be achieved through solitary study.

Open Applications

Black Studies and Classical Liberalism
This reading group will look at the intersection of Black Studies and classical liberalism. Join Dr. Fabio Rojas to explore the following questions: what is Black Studies? Where did the field come from? How can we understand the various struggles for Black freedom? How does that relate to classical liberal ideas about freedom? Learn about these topics and more as we discuss the abolition of slavery, civil rights, black power and mass incarceration.

  • Discussion Leader: Dr.Fabio Rojas, Department of Sociology, Indiana University
  • Meeting Time: Mondays at 1pm EDT (2/22, 2/29, 3/7, 3/14, and 3/21)

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The Socialist Calculation Debate
This reading group will explore the socialist calculation debate. Readings will be available online and include work by Ludwig von Mises, Frederich Hayek, Don Lavoie, Frederich Engels, Oskar Lange, and others. This reading group is for students who have some experience in economics, and are interested in the long running theoretical debate concerning the viability of centrally planned economies. We will explore classic texts in this debate which remains of critical importance today as socialism remains a hotly contested topic.

  • Discussion Leader: Dr. Steve Horwitz, Department of Economics, St. Lawrence University
  • Meeting Time: Mondays at 9pm EDT (1/25, 2/1, 2/8, 2/15, and 2/22)

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Past Reading Groups


The Moral Foundations of Libertarianism 

This reading group will be led by philosopher Roderick Long and discuss the various justifications for libertarianism. From Rothbard’s natural rights to Ayn Rand’s rational egoism to Hans-Hermann Hoppe’s argumentation ethics, the philosophy of liberty is a deep, robust tradition of ideas. Join Professor Long to untangle these arguments and learn all the reasons why liberty is worthwhile.

Libertarianism and Feminism

This reading group will be led by libertarian feminists Rachel Davison and Charles Johnson. Are libertarianism and feminism compatible? How have the two ideologies interacted historically? What would a truly libertarian feminist look like? Join Rachel and Charles to learn what feminism can tell us about liberty.

The Work of Don Lavoie

This reading group will be led by economist and student of Don Lavoie, Steve Horwitz. Don Lavoie earned his PhD in economics from NYU in 1981 for his thesis Rivalry and Central Planning: A Re-examination of the Debate over Economics Calculation under Socialism and is an enormous influence on the modern Austrian School of Economics. Author of numerous articles, essays, and books, Lavoie’s work focuses on competitive rivalry in the market system, the nature and function of prices, and the role of culture in economic development. Join Professor Horwitz to gain a better understanding of this monumental thinker.