For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

Manifesto of Democracy

by Considerant, Victor (1847)


The leading disciple of 19th century utopian socialist Charles Fourier, Victor Considerant expounded and moderated Fourier's theories in an attempt to found a utopian community near Dallas, Texas. His 1847 treatise sought to utilize social science for the organization of peaceful societies, the productive development of resources, and fair worker's rights. Reeling from the chaotic economic and social aftermath of the French Revolution, this text offered a nonrevolutionary approach to socialism, calling for balance between the right to property and the right to an adequate standard of living, and a gradual increase in political participation in proportion to increases in the educational level. Highly influential in formulating 19th century economic and political thought, this modern translation brings these seminal ideas to contemporary English readers.

Key Passage

Social unity will not be freely consented to and sustained by any population unless the social system meets the needs of all classes. The propertied classes sense the need to preserve order because they have everything to lose with disorder, and Society protects their right. Let us also do for the Right to Work, which is the only Property of the masses, what one does for the Right to Property of the elite; let us recognize it, guarantee it, protect it, and organize it. Only under this condition will there be a foundation laid for the National Unity of classes. ()


History, Democracy, Democratic Theory, Socialism, Unions, Property Rights, Political Participation, Utopian, Rights, Workers Rights


Victor Considerant, Right to Work



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