Locke and Hobbes are both famed political philosophers whose writings have been greatly influential in the development of modern political thought. In addition, the two are similar in that both refer to a “state of nature” in which man exists without government, and both speak of risks in this state. However, while both speak of the dangers of a state of nature, Hobbes is more pessimistic, whereas Locke speaks of the potential benefits. In addition, Hobbes speaks of states of nature theoretically, whereas Locke points out examples where they exist.
Locke foresaw the same potential threat as Hobbes, but he felt that man, as a social, animal, also had an innate desire to cooperate as well as compete. He could choose to be virtuous as well as venal (Morgan, 2011, p. 716). Not simply because he was “good,” but because cooperation and conflict reduction were also in his enlightened self-interest (Morgan, 2011, p. 594). Locke, unlike Hobbes, was a Deist, and was influenced by his religious view of man. Men are sinners
Everyone has their own very unique views on everything in the world. What’s right and what’s wrong is a good example of how humanity views different subjects let’s say a man kills another man to protect his family from harm he may see it as okay to do but in the bible it says “thou shall should not kill” so it’s all how you look at it. In this paper I will be discussing the different view point of Hobbes, Locke, and Rousseau on the most basic tenets of classical liberalism. For example the states of nature, the social contracts, and the sets of view of the rights and obligations of citizens and states. My first topic that I will be discussing is the different views of social contracts. It will go in order from Hobbes to Locke then to Rousseau.
Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau developed theories on human nature and how men govern themselves. With the passing of time, political views on the philosophy of government gradually changed. Despite their differences, Hobbes and Rousseau, both became two of the most influential political theorists in the world. Their ideas and philosophies spread all over the world influencing the creation of many new governments. These theorists all recognize that people develop a social contract within their society, but have differing views on what exactly the social contract is and how it is established. By way of the differing versions of the social contract Hobbes and Rousseau agreed that certain
Hobbes’ Leviathan and Locke’s Second Treatise of Government comprise critical works in the lexicon of political science theory. Both works expound on the origins and purpose of civil society and government. Hobbes’ and Locke’s writings center on the definition of the “state of nature” and the best means by which a society develops a systemic format from this beginning. The authors hold opposing views as to how man fits into the state of nature and the means by which a government should be formed and what type of government constitutes the best. This difference arises from different conceptions about human nature and “the state of nature”, a condition in which the human race
Thomas Hobbes describes his views on human nature and his ideal government in Leviathan. He believes human nature is antagonistic, and condemns man to a life of violence and misery without strong government. In contrast to animals, who are able to live together in a society without a coercive power, Hobbes believes that men are unable to coexist peacefully without a greater authority because they are confrontational by nature. “In the nature of man”, Hobbes says “there are three principal causes of quarrel: first, competition; secondly, diffidence, thirdly, glory” and then he goes on to list man’s primary aims for each being gain, safety and reputation (Hobbes, Leviathan, 13, 6).
His writings had a great impact in the perception of the leaders of America. John Locke was an English philosopher who highly influenced the Founding Fathers. He highly believed in natural science and in the growing middle class and represented the principles of the Enlightenment. In an essay Locke wrote concerning human understanding in 1690, Locke denied the idea of native beliefs and argued that every individual is born with a blank mind and that it is the environment that shapes the individual. Thomas Hobbes 's belief that kings govern by divine power was rejected by Locke. He believed that every human being was born equal and that the surroundings in the environment was what molded everyone. Locke argued that people are blessed with some natural rights such as liberty, life, and property. Locke was the philosopher that exposed the concept of governmental checks and balances which later became the foundation for the U. S. Constitution.
Thomas Hobbes and john Locke were both enlightment philosophers who use the state of nature as a formula in political philosophy. Both Locke and Hobbes had tried to influence by their sociopolitical background, “to expose the man as he was before the advent of the social life” (). Locke and Hobbes addressed man’s relation to the society around him; however, they came to different conclusions regarding the nature of human government.
While reading the “The Second Treatise of Government,” you can notice and see that John Locke has a strong standing for civil rights as well as helping with the development of the Constitution of the United States. He states that the “consent of the governed,” is basically saying that communities are not put together by the divine right or ruled by. Paternal, familial, and political are types of powers that John Locke mentions that have all have unlike characteristics. He inspired others to believe in and want equal rights and democracy. John Locke talks about the state of nature, which basically states that no one has the power to be ruler of someone, as well as they are able to do what they want in a freely matter. In other words people are born just like anyone else that is born, and should have equally rights to property, health, and liberty, and that no one should have the power over anyone. Everyone should be able to live and enjoy his or her own freedom and wellbeing. However, the state of nature is not a guarantee to have natural laws, which could help with the protecting of one’s property. According to him having your own personal freedom was the true meaning of state of nature. John Locke thought that people were following his faith in human rationality through the declaration of Locke. John Locke states that if the government takes away from others for them to empower them then the people have right and opportunity to go against
John Locke, John Stuart Mill, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau all dealt with the issue of political freedom within a society. John Locke's “The Second Treatise of Government”, Mill's “On Liberty”, and Rousseau’s “Discourse On The Origins of Inequality” are influential and compelling literary works which while outlining the conceptual framework of each thinker’s ideal state present divergent visions of the very nature of man and his freedom. The three have somewhat different views regarding how much freedom man ought to have in political society because they have different views regarding man's basic potential for inherently good or evil behavior, as well as the ends or
John Locke and Thomas Hobbes were two main political philosophers during the seventeenth century. Hobbes is largely known for his writing of the “Leviathan”, and Locke for authoring "An Essay Concerning Human Understanding." Included in their essays, both men discuss the purpose and structure of government, natural law, and the characteristics of man in and out of the state of nature. The two men's opinion of man vary widely. Hobbes sees man as being evil, whereas Locke views man in a much more optimistic light. While in the state of nature and under natural law, they both agree that man is equal. However, their ideas of natural law differ
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).
Locke’s thought on having a king, laws, and a civil society under a social contract was so all men can enjoy and protect their rights. Where all men obtain the right to life, all humans have the right to live and life shouldn't be taken away from another human being. The right to liberty, protecting an individual's freedom and unreasonable detention. The right to property, a citizen in which Locke thought a human's labour was his own, anything created or made should remain that individuals as well and the right to rebel against unjust rulers and laws.