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 Gaetano Filangieri Association

San Potito Sannitico


The Gaetano Filangieri Association was born from the will of Antonio, Elisabeth, Yvonne and Christiane Filangieri De Candida Gonzaga, residing in the homonymous building located in San Potito Sannitico in the province of Caserta. The Association is inspired by the famous Neapolitan enlightenment jurist and philosopher Gaetano Filangieri, who wrote the work "The Science of Legislation" in 1780. This book brings to light the social injustices that afflicted Bourbon Naples and the other capitals, pervaded by the unbridled luxury of feudal privileges of the aristocracy and the clergy, to the detriment of the plebs who lived in ignorance and absolute poverty. In this context Gaetano Filangieri was a great reformer, anticipating the 3 mottoes of the French revolution: "Equality, brotherhood, freedom". In fact, his work deals with the main proposals for reforms in the political - economic field (abolition of feudal privileges), criminal relations between religion and legislation and especially in the educational field. In 1780 Filangieri,  "The Science of Legislation" wrote: "In the concrete progress of the system of laws lies the progress of national Happiness, the achievement of which is the true goal of the government which follows it not generically but as the sum of happiness of the individuals "(The Association therefore is inspired in its objectives by the concept of" the right to happiness of each individual) ". In fact, the concept of "pursuit of happiness" that we find in the declaration of independence of the United States of America was with no doubts borrowed in the "Science of legislation". In that extraordinary document, in 1776, an inalienable right to man was affirmed never before: the right to happiness. Those words "pursuit of happiness" that had so much meaning for the destiny of  America, were born thanks to the intuitions of Gaetano Filangieri and his relationship with one of the fathers of the United States of America, Benjamin Franklin, who wanted to insert it in the Founding act of the Nation replacing Locke's "right to property". So if happiness in America is a real right, something that does not happen in our constitution, it is due to a Neapolitan, who found fertile ground for his theories in distant territories. The Association is therefore inspired in its objectives by the concept of "the right to happiness of each individual"

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