The Journal of Libertarian Studies

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Libertarianism and Libertinism

The Journal of Libertarian Studies

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07/30/2014Walter Block

There is perhaps no greater confusion in all of political economy than that between libertarianism and libertinism. That they are commonly mistaken for one another is an understatement of the highest order. For several reasons, it is difficult to compare and contrast libertarianism and libertinism. First and most important, on some issues the two views do closely resemble one another, at least superficially. Second-perhaps purely by accident, perhaps due to etymological considerations-the two words not only sound alike, but are spelled almost identically. It is all the more important, then, to distinguish between the very different concepts these words represent.

Volume 11, Number 1 (1994)


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Walter Block is the Harold E. Wirth Eminent Scholar Endowed Chair in Economics at Loyola University, senior fellow of the Mises Institute, and regular columnist for

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Cite This Article

Block, Walter. "Libertarianism and Libertinism." Journal of Libertarian Studies 11, No. 1 (1994): 117–128.