Title page from Philosophical View of Reform (1820)

Philosophical View of Reform (1820)

The poet Shelley also wrote non-fiction like this essay on the need for political reform in 1820. It remained unpublished until it was rediscovered in the late 19th century. It is a tour de force of analysis of the powerful interests which controlled British society in the early 19th century and a very interesting historical survey of how these elites came to power and retained this power.

Key Quotes

Property Rights

Labour and skill and the immediate wages of labour and skill is a property of the most sacred and indisputable right, and the foundation of all other property. And the right of a man to property in the exertion of his own bodily and mental faculties, or on the produce and free reward from and for…