The debate over political freedom is a central contemporary concern, not only in the West, but also in Eastern Europe and around the world. Political Freedom begins with an examination of the three important accounts that inform this debate: the conservative view found in the work of Edmund Burke and Michael Oakeshott; the liberal account of John Locke, J.S. Mill and Isaiah Berlin; the radical tradition that originates with Karl Marx. It argues that these views, as developed in modern political thought, fail to meet even their own standards and that none will serve as a satisfactory model of political freedom. George Brenkert in the second part of the book develops an alternative model of political freedom as empowerment. This model argues that any discussion of political freedom cannot centre on a single concept of political freedom, rather it must acknowledge the existence of multiple concepts of political freedom.
Individual rights, democratic participation in all parts of society - including private businesses and corporations - and the material and intellectual resources to allow individuals to exercise their right to self-determination, are only some of the issues which this timely account of freedom incorporates.