Compare and Contrast Hobbes’s and Locke’s Views of the State of Nature and the Fundamental Purpose of Political Society. Whose View Is the More Plausible? Why?

1564 Words Jul 30th, 2013 7 Pages
Compare and contrast Hobbes’s and Locke’s views of the state of nature and the fundamental purpose of political society. Whose view is the more plausible? Why?

Thomas Hobbes and John Locke were both natural law theorists and social contracts theorists. While most natural law theorists have predominantly been of the opinion that humans are social animals by nature, Locke and Hobbes had a different perspective. Their points of view were remarkably different from those perpetuated by other natural law theorists. On the other hand, Locke’s perspective of human nature wasn’t quite as fine as Hobbe’s, although it was much simpler to understand based on its logical foundation. This essay compares and contrast
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This perspective is essentially materialist and rather careful interpretation of the human conditions is radical and far-reaching in the history of political though and particularly disagrees with Locke’s. Unlike Locke’s perspective therefore, self-interest is the dominant theme of Hobbes’ perspective of the state of nature (Hobbes, 1994).
According to Hobbes, the absence of authority delineates the state of nature. Hobbes believes that all men are equal in spite of the fact that some may appear smarter or tougher than others. In addition, humans are in perpetual state of war as they are self-centered and will often be willing to do anything that is at their personal interests (Hobbes, 1994). Locke however maintains that in the state of nature, humans live in accordance with reason and that there is no “superior” to act as the judge. Locke is of the view that the state of nature differs from the state of war, and that it contains equality and each person has identical powers (Locke, 2005).
While Hobbes uses Laws of Nature in his logical argument, they appear to be less universally binding compared to Locke’s. Indeed, they specifically apply in circumstances where an individual’s life feels secure. In principle however, humans are generally inclined to comply with them. Conversely, in the practical life situation, the desire for self preservation takes precedence. Hence, a civil society
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