Throughout the paper, a detailed discussion will critically evaluate Mill’s contribution to the philosophical understanding to the value of individuality by examining key issues of debate, such as the context of both civil society and civil liberty, the elements of well-being, and an inquiry into social limits or constraints placed over an individual by means of laws and authority figures.
In the course of On Liberty, Mill states two principles of demarcation. Although Mill raises serious objections to his first principle that suggests that the “only legitimate grounds for social coercion is to prevent someone from doing harm to others” (Mill, 1978, xv), he then suggests its defect by illustrating a second principle of demarcation. Although stating objections to his own principles, Mill attempts to allow the reader to appreciate the problem that he is addressing and to participate in his critical inquiry. (Mill, 1978, xvi) The basic subject of his essay remains a philosophical necessity, as it explains the “nature and limits of the power which can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual”. (Mill, 1978, 1) As Mill remains a figure of direct contribution, his inquiries uncover the struggle between liberty and authority. Specifically, through a historical context, Mill’s contribution finds itself dealing with the earliest and most familiar area of authority, particularly in that of Greece, Rome, and England. (Mill, 1978, 1) Accordingly, the liberty of an individual associates its meaning as “the protection against the tyranny of the political rulers.” (Mill, 1978, 1) Mill assesses the idea of society and its ability to execute wrong mandates instead of right, in which he claims it “practices a social tyranny” because it objects to the formation of any individuality that may form as a result of independent ideas and practices. (Mill, 1978, 1) Mill continues to debate