Auguste Comte and the Prospects for a Technocracy of the Right
A seminar on technocracy, politics, and morality
Time & Location
May 23, 2022, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM PDT
Zephyr Institute, 560 College Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94306, USA
About the Event
Technocracy is one of the keywords of the era. But what is the relationship between technocratic expertise and morality? And must technocracy always have a left-wing valence? This seminar considers those fundamental questions by looking at the work of Auguste Comte (1789-1857). An influential founder of sociology, Comte responded to the turbulent aftermath of the French Revolution by propounding one of the most ambitious technocratic projects ever: a state in which workers would voluntarily abdicate political power in favor of a division of labor. On the one hand, there would be the “temporal power,” placed in the hands of bankers/captains of industry; and on the other hand, there would be the “spiritual power,” located in a scientific elite who would direct not only education but also public opinion, and who would moreover serve as priests of a new science-based Religion of Humanity.
Dinner and drinks will be provided.
This seminar is for students and young professionals. The deadline for registration is Friday, May 20th.
- Auguste Comte, A General View of Positivism, Ch. 6
- Auguste Comte, "Considerations on the Spiritual Power"
- Suggested Further Reading: H.S. Jones, "Introduction to Auguste Comte"
Greg Conti is assistant professor of Politics at Princeton University. He studies the history of liberalism, democracy, and representative government.
Image from here.