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Response to Aristus (Reply #4)

Tue Apr 5, 2022, 09:22 PM

5. And they have two words for "freedom."

One is svoboda, the other is volya.

Volya's usually described as unrestrained--you do what you want, and nobody can stop you. There is no moral code to prevent action.

Svoboda I usually see as more delimited--it means freedom to act, lack of tyranny or restraint. Freedom of the press is svoboda. I think of it as akin to "liberty", which is public space that's provided to act out my private views and principles in freely, without saying they're identical--that's a nuance I haven't run into often enough.

The de facto license that husbands had decades ago in beating their wives? The sense of sexual license that many attribute to frat boys? How gangsters and mobsters act? Or Russia? Volya. There's no sense of constraints that you're acting in--there's no sense of constraint apart from what you bring to your actions, and those typically are frail and puny.

(I can come up with additional words that mean about the same kinds of things, mostly nuanced versions of these, or highlighting some particular feature.)

Non-native speaker, just reporting what I've been told, read, and (to some extent) observed. And since some of this is POV-based, there's going to be overlap.

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