Role of Government as a Socializing Agent and the Role of Morality in Effective Social Control

2852 WordsNov 30, 200612 Pages
Question "Thomas Hobbes (Leviathan) maintained that for social control to exist, there must be strong government to ensure moral and social harmony. Niccolo Machiavelli (The Prince) however, contended that social benefits for social stability and security can be achieved in the face of moral corruption." In about 2000 words, write an essay based on research found in the two books above that talks about the role of government as a socializing agent and the role of morality in effective social control. The basis of both Leviathan written by Thomas Hobbes and Niccolo Machiavelli's The Prince revolves around the use of Natural Law as well as the methods of governing people vis-à-vis the writers' perspectives on virtues and morality in the…show more content…
The sovereign must be a Leviathan, a biblical reference to a monster, that connotes a huge, powerful authority that is responsible for the matters that are linked to aggression, man at war with another, or anything that pertains to the state. This centralized form of power is what we call the Leviathan state, where the government is above all else, the main authority that decides, use his power and ways to promote peace and attain a common defense for his people. I can understand Hobbes's point of view, in terms of the need for a strong government to exist such that control is present to govern the people of the state. The argument of the book is that the sovereign must have great authority, like Leviathan, if peace is to be attained and kept in balance. Hobbes uses two key ideas: the state of nature, and the law of nature. He asks the reader to imagine what life would be like if there were no sovereign, the strong, powerful government, and argues that the sovereign must have enough power to enforce the Law of nature if this unhappy condition, (whereby Man, is by nature creatures who seek and act in the interest of himself, and thus could possibly bring about harm) is to be ended. However he also includes control over ecclesiastical powers, the idea of morality stems in from here. Why is there a need for government to ensure morality and to link it to the affairs of the state, rather a responsibility on the part of the

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