Nature of Freedom in the Eighteenth and the Nineteenth Century
Evidence shows that the nature of freedom in the eighteenth and the nineteenth century was still a critical aspect that was not yet fully induced in the societal and national leadership and human rights related sectors. It was yet a factor that was dear to the people, they were sacrificing to earn it, but at the same time, they were not in full recognition of what it entailed, hence for some, the freedom they thought they had was not freedom at all. As quoted in John Hobson’s Imperialism, 1902, During the nineteenth century the struggle towards nationalism, or establishment of political union on a basis of nationality was a dominant factor alike dynastic movements and as an inner motive in the life of masses of population. A clear indication that freedom was not yet fully adapted into the systems of rule and governance (John A, pg.35).
According to the Haitian Declaration of Independence as laid in the official copies in The United Kingdom National Archives, the Generals are talked into sacrificing their lives for the freedom of their people. In the General in Chief’s message to his people, he explains the suffering they have undergone under the French rule, enticing the people to be conscious of their rights and freedom and assuring them of the fight for indecency. From Immanuel Kant’s quote in his answer to the question “What is Enlightenment?”, And the freedom in question is the most innocuous form of all–freedom to make public use of one’s reason in all matters. But I hear on all sides the cry: Don’t argue! The officer says: Don’t argue, get on parade! The tax-official: Don’t argue, pay! The clergyman: Don’t argue, believe! (Only one ruler in the world says: Argue as much as you like and about whatever you like, but obey!). All this means restrictions on freedom everywhere. It is a clear indication that what people term as freedom ends up enslaving them.
Ignorance and neglect of human rights are a big cause to the government calamities that normally occur. With people being deprived off of their rights, it’s easy to go against their rule and governance. It is always some type of manipulation that cannot be barred by a human being this can bring about conflicts that are a threat to the security and peace oof a country. This explains more why the eighteenth and the nineteenth century had conflicts and wars among nations. It was a quest for freedom that most countries had, due to the subjection of colonialism, the freedom and rights of their people were compromised.
However, among the places whereby people were lucky enough to attain their own freedom, they seemed to so be still subjected to some kinds of restrictions without their conscience. An example is whereby one is bound to adhere to some laws without questioning, for example in the religious sector, instances whereby one’s point of view towards something would be considered a social wrong. Freedom was embraced highly but the overlook of governance and laws ended up enslaving people’s rights and freedoms again.
In these centuries, freedom is a critical aspect to the coexistence of people and nations it is also an aspect that should be clearly defined to the people in order to efficiently be applicable. Rules of nature and the norm should however not compromise the freedom and rights of people.
From John A. Hobson, Imperialism (London: Allen and Unwin, 1948),pp.35 7172,7778,8081,9293.
IMMANUEL KANT An Answer to the Question: “What is Enlightenment?” Konigsberg, Prussia, 30th September, 1784.
The Haitian Declaration of Independence: Creation, Context, and Legacy (UVA, 2016), pages 239-247.