Morelly


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Morelly

 

French 18th-century Utopian communist. There is no reliable biographical information about him.

Morelly’s views were most thoroughly developed in the narrative poem Basiliada (1753) and the treatise Code of Nature, or The True Spirit of Its Laws, published anonymously in French in Amsterdam in 1755 (most recent Russian translation, 1956). He believed that the system founded on private property contradicts both reason and nature and should be replaced with a communist order which, he assumed, would be to some degree a return to a lost natural condition. However, he observed that although the communism of the past had been unconscious, the communism of the future would be conscious. Unlike T. More and T. Campanella, whose views influenced him, Morelly postulated his ideas of the future communist society not in a description of an imaginary country but in legislative projects. He formulated three “basic and sacred” laws, with the promulgation of which the restructuring of society along communist lines would begin. The first law abolishes private property, the second secures for all citizens the right to work and guarantees compensation from society, and the third obliges each citizen to engage in socially useful labor “in accordance with his strength, talent, and age.”

Morelly assumed that communism would be realized not in small, separate communes, as earlier Utopians had believed, but in an entire country, with centralized planning and distribution of labor and its products. Of all the Utopian thinkers of the 16th through 18th centuries, Morelly came closest to the idea of eliminating the antithesis between physical and mental labor under communism. Nonetheless, his views are historically limited, revealing that he was, to a great degree, a product of his time. For instance, leveling tendencies are strong in his teachings. Although he was almost unknown to his contemporaries, Morelly influenced the development of the views of G. Babeuf, as well as those of French Utopian socialists of the first half of the 19th century (E. Cabet, C. Fourier, and, to some extent, T. Dézamy).

WORKS

Essai sur l’esprit humain. Paris, 1743.
Essai sur le coeur humain. Paris, 1745.

REFERENCES

Volgin, V. P. Frantsuzskii utopicheskii kommunizm. Moscow, 1960.
Reverdy, A. Morelly: Idées philosophiques, économiques et politiques. Poitier, 1909.

B. A. KAMENETSKII

References in periodicals archive ?
Tesis defendida en la Sorbona, que rescata textos marginados o clandestinos que demuestran que los escritos de Etienne Gabriel Morelly y Gabriel Bonnot de Mably tuvieron amplia circulacion en la Revolucion Francesa, gracias al trabajo de promocion y agitacion de ideas que hizo Gracchus Babeuf, lider de la corriente de los "comunautistas".
Este enfoque valora debidamente la influencia del hecho americano en la configuracion del discurso de la Utopia en el renacimiento, y destaca la influencia del Inca Garcilaso en el siglo XVIII, cuyas obras fueron bien conocidas por Morelly y Mably (ver parte I del libro, "Morelly o el adios a la novela").
Under the influence of Morelly and Babeuf in France, of William Godwin in England and of Weitling in Germany, the concepts of revolution and necessary violence became subordinated to utopia, which caused the counter-reaction, scepticism and irony of an entire series of antiutopian thinkers.
Central District Technician Michael Morelly of Princeton, whom hunters can thank for stocking many of our pheasants each fall, has been approved by the Fisheries and Wildlife Board to fill the vacant District Wildlife Biologist position.
Todos se habian formado en la masoneria tradicional, donde aprendieron los principios del progreso, beneficencia y filantropia, asi como las teorias de igualdad social y economica promulgadas por Morelly, Mably y Rosseau".
Jose, Bernardino, Comercio de telas finas y calzado, Carlos y Roque tenian una almacen ubicado en la Morelly.
En el siglo XVIII, en la epoca de La Ilustracion, pensadores como Voltaire, Montesquieu, Morelly y Beccaria, entre otros, desarrollaron un interes por reformar la practica judicial pugnando por la eliminacion del catalogo de delitos y los actos contra la religion y por la creacion de criterios fijos para la administracion de justicia, humanizacion de las penas y la aplicacion de castigos proporcionales al delito (15), abriendo con ello la posibilidad de que el Derecho Clasico o Liberal se consolidara en el siglo XIX.
begins with discussion of the educational philosophy of John Locke, then progresses through Claude Fleury, Charles Rollin, and Jean-Pierre de Crousaz; continues with Etienne-Gabriel Morelly and the Helvetius-Rousseau controversy; and ends with Rousseau's Emile.
7) Niemeyer identifies this critique in the writings of the eighteenth century French radicals Meslier, Morelly, and Babeuf.
La figura clave en esta "utopia de la Ilustracion" fue el abate Morelly, un precursor (segun Vidler) de los socialistas utopicos y sus planes urbanos del temprano siglo XIX.
The end of the chapter mentions more briefly Joseph Hall and a few other writers including Fenelon and Morelly.