The Social Theory of Hoppe

PP750 — with Stephan Kinsella

Cost: $49   Length: 6 Lectures
Format: Independent Study
Status: Open for enrollment

Austro-libertarianism’s international scholar-superstar Hans-Hermann Hoppe burst onto the scene in the late 1980s, when he moved to the United States to study under and work with his mentor Murray Rothbard. Since Hoppe’s arrival he has produced a steady stream of provocative, pioneering contributions to sociology, economics, libertarianism and political philosophy, and history  After Rothbard’s untimely death in 1995, Professor Hoppe assumed a place of uncontested leadership among Austro-libertarian scholars, becoming the editor of the Journal of Libertarian Studies(JLS), a coeditor of the Review of Austrian Economics, and then a coeditor of the Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics. His important books include A Theory of Socialism and Capitalism (1989), The Economics and Ethics of Private Property (1993, enlarged 2nd edition 2006), Democracy: The God that Failed (2001), and The Myth of National Defense (editor, 2003).

Professor Hoppe and his writings have inspired scholars all over the world to follow in his footsteps and to provide a scientific foundation for individual freedom and a free society (his works have been translated into at least 22 languages, not counting English). His influence was extended when he founded the international Property and Freedom Society (PFS) in 2006 as a more radical alternative to the now-watered-down Mont Pèlerin Society. Professor Hoppe is truly one of the most important scholars of our time.

This six-week course will present and discuss Professor Hoppe’s most important ideas and theories, including his brilliant critique of positivist methodology as applied to the social sciences, his groundbreaking “argumentation ethics” praxeological approach to political philosophy, his encompassing comparative analysis of socialism and capitalism, his profound critique of democracy, and a host of other insights and contributions to areas such as monopoly theory, the theory of public goods, the sociology of taxation, the private production of security, immigration, the nature of property and scarcity, economic methodology and epistemology, and the evolution of monetary institutions and their impact on international relations.

This course will be taught by Austro-libertarian legal philosopher Stephan Kinsella, who has been a close associate of Professor Hoppe for 17 years. Kinsella is uniquely qualified to teach this course, as he served as Book Review Editor of the JLS for five years under Hoppe’s editorship; he founded and edits Libertarian Papers, the successor journal to the JLS; and, with Guido Hülsmann, was editor of the festschrift in Hoppe’s honor, Property, Freedom, and Society: Essays in Honor of Hans-Hermann Hoppe (Mises Institute, 2009). Kinsella’s previous Mises Academy courses include Rethinking Intellectual Property and Libertarian Legal Theory.

Professor Hoppe has endorsed this course and has graciously offered to provide a written response to submitted questions near the end of the course.

Reading material for the course will consist primarily of A Theory of Socialism and Capitalism and The Economics and Ethics of Private Property, both free online in both ePub and PDF format, and several other selected articles by Professor Hoppe that are also available for free online.

Independent Study

Independent study courses are courses that were presented live in the past. These courses are now offered at a discount to anyone who wants to study independently. All courses include lecture recordings, slides, a complete hyper-linked syllabus, automatically-graded quizzes, and a discussion forum. Professors are not available for academic support for these independent study courses.


Stephan Kinsella

Senior Fellow of the Ludwig von Mises Institute, Founder and Editor of Libertarian Papers, Founder and Director of the Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom (C4SIF), and General Counsel for Applied Optoelectronics, Inc.

A registered patent attorney and former adjunct professor at South Texas College of Law, he has published numerous articles and books on IP law, international law, and the application of libertarian principles to legal topics, including Against Intellectual Property and Property, Freedom, and Society: Essays in Honor of Hans-Hermann Hoppe (co-editor, with Jörg Guido Hülsmann, Mises Institute, 2009).

He received an LL.M. in international business law from King’s College London, a JD from the Paul M. Hebert Law Center at LSU, and BSEE and MSEE degrees from LSU.

See StephanKinsella.com for more information.

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