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It seems that as soon as one makes any positive comments about feminism, the floodgates open with cries of “not all men,” “why do you hate men,” slurs and insults, and even threats of rape or death. Much of this reaction seems to come from a fundamental misunderstanding of what feminism is and where it can go. Feminism is seen as hateful, unproductive, and opposed to libertarianism principles. Though we can find rude and hateful people, unproductive activism, and statist thinking in any social movement, these features are not endemic to feminism as a whole. Though a history of the feminist movement would be far longer than space allows, I would like to dispel some common misconceptions and explain how we can advance liberty through feminism.1

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This October 4th, take a load off with a day discussing the ideas that make a free society in beautiful Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at the Spooner Symposium! 10-15 young people will come together to critically discuss the ideas of liberty in a friendly, Liberty Fund-style format. The Symposium covers meals, facilities, and supplies — all you need to do is find a way there!

Undergraduates and recent graduates who are interested in getting to know more about the ideas of liberty are encouraged to apply by September 15, 2014.


Click here to apply! Click here to view the reading list. 


The following is the first in a series of posts by 2014-2015 SFL Blogging team member and campus coordinator Lucas Lostoski.

The libertarian movement has an attitude problem. Too many libertarians have centered their focus on the misdeeds of the state and not upon the amazing aspects of a free society. They have failed to provide others with a vision of what a free society would entail. When we harp on the abuses of our renegade government we bestow upon ourselves an image of gloom and negativity. That’s not to say we shouldn’t point out state abuse; to the contrary it is important to highlight the evils that the powerful commit. However, complaining about President Obama, the TSA, and the welfare-state cannot be our only message. We must have a positive message to complement our concerns. By being optimistic, we enable others to perceive the beauty and inherent loveliness of liberty. We will be far more effective as a movement if we can focus on the positive traits of liberty because human beings respond much better to positive visions than negative ones.

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The following was written by African Students For Liberty Executive Board Member Odunola Oladejo. 

On Saturday, August 23rd, the first ever Women For Liberty Seminar was held at the Students Union Congress Room, Federal University of Agriculture Abeokuta in Ibadan, Nigeria with about 15 female student leaders in attendance. The theme of the seminar, “Women for Liberty, Leadership and Empowerment,” was designed to stimulate women’s interests in taking up leadership positions in African countries, to foster discussion on the best ways to cultivate the spread of human rights and economic development, and to help women become dynamic leaders and powerful advocates of change.

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The following is a guest post by SFL Campus Coordinator Levi Gourdie.

Earlier today, my colleague Jason Byas published a piece on left-libertarianism to help promote one of SFL’s two virtual reading groups, which will explore Markets Not Capitalism, a collection of left-libertarian writings edited by Gary Chartier & Charles W. Johnson. To balance the scale, I will give a brief overview of right libertarianism, the dominant form of libertarianism that first came out of the classical liberal tradition. Murray Rothbard, the subject of the other virtual reading group, could arguably be considered a right libertarian. There are several distinct ideas that are included in the right-libertarian tradition, but here I will focus on just one: The view of liberty as an end in itself.

A distinguishing view of many left-libertarians is the notion that liberty is the means by which they can achieve their ideal social hierarchy (or more accurately, lack thereof). To explore this, let’s look at one typical left-libertarian tradition, anarcha-feminism. Anarcha-feminists view the state as an inherently partiarchal system that must be abolished because it perpetuates an unequal society. While the equal treatment of men and women is a noble goal worthy of pursuit, right-libertarians do not support liberty because it is a means to that end (or any other, for that matter). Rather, liberty of the human condition is an end in its own right and should not be considered just a means to socially engineer society to fit one’s personal preferences. To view liberty as a means to an end is the same logic many use to advocate for a powerful state.

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