The concept of civil society is a central one for most contemporary political theorists and social analysts. As such, it is of great importance for all political ideologies, including libertarianism. Essentially, the term civil society refers to the sphere of uncoerced collective action, as opposed to individual action, on the one hand, and government, on the other hand. In other words, it is the term used to describe the total range of voluntary social institutions that derive from the free association and cooperation of individuals in pursuit of a common interest, as opposed to the institutions of government, which ultimately rest on force. Thus, it includes clubs, unions and associations, firms, and a whole range of informal and ad hoc social institutions that are produced ...

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