Inequality, unfairness, discrimination are all some things a majority of society has struggled with for many centuries. No matter how far back humans go into the past it is something a lot of people have disagreed on, including the seventeenth and eighteenth century. The seventeenth and eighteenth century were a time when philosophers increased in prominence. They started to speak what was on their mind and tried to get others to side with them by giving them information on what their theories were. Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau ended up becoming two of the most influential political theorists in the world that had similar, yet different theories on human nature. (Cahn, Steven M. Political philosophy: the essential texts. Oxford Univ. Press, 2015.) In this essay I will argue that Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s state of nature is better than Thomas Hobbes because of their own definition of state of nature, the people have their own rights, and they are not governed by a monarch. Thomas Hobbes was born on April 5, 1588, Westport, England. His father disappeared after a brawling in front of his own church, leaving his three children in the care of his brother. Uncle Hobbes, a tradesman, provided for Thomas’s education. Hobbes was an outstanding student of classical language and by the age of fourteen he went to Oxford to study. (Biography.com Editors. “Thomas Hobbes biography.com." The Biography.com website. A&E Television. June 4, 2014.) By, 1608, he became a private tutor
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The revolution generated radical changes in the principles, opinions, and sentiments of the global people. New ideas and issues affected political ideas. In addition a new government was also changed. A few of the many enlightenment thinkers were Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, baron Do Montesquieu, and Jean Jacques Rousseau.
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.
In this essay, I will compare the contrasting views between Thomas Hobbes and Jean Jacques Rousseau based on the state of nature and civilization. Rousseau was seen as an optimist who viewed human nature as good (“Noble Savage”) and believed that civilization corrupted us; While, Hobbes thought the complete opposite believing that humans in their natural state were selfish creatures purely interested in themselves and that government is imperative in keeping us in check. Throughout this essay, I will further explain their differing ideas and I will show how I view and interpret them as well.
Drug abuse is obviously a huge issue in our country, but how would Hobbes and Rousseau’s opinions differ on it? Hobbes talks about individual self interests and punishment. Rousseau talks about education and socialization. The both believe however that the sovereign should decide these laws
Thomas Hobbes and John Locke are comparable in their basic political ideologies about man and their rights in the state of nature before they enter a civil society. Their political ideas are very much similar in that regard. The resemblance between Hobbes and Locke’s philosophies are based on a few characteristics of the state of nature and the state of man. Firstly, in the state of nature both Hobbes and Locke agree that all men are created equal, but their definitions of equality in the state of nature slightly differ. According to Locke, “…in the state of nature… no one has power over another…” Locke’s version or idea of equality in the state of
What is common in Locke, Hobbes and Rousseau is state of nature. In the state of nature all people are equal – although they have different talents they are equal, because having different talents doesn’t prevent equality - and have same rights but in time they try to command each other and make domination upon them. Hobbes associate this desire with the effort to dispel the insecurity which is caused by equality between people. According to his opinion, if two people desire the same thing that they can not possess at the same time, they turn on each other. – we can affirm that this hostility is generated by equality-. Mainly for the purpose of protecting their entity, sometimes only by enjoying they try to destroy or dominate each other.
Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau have very different views on the social contract largely based on their fundamental views of the state of nature in humanity. These basic views of natural human nature cause Hobbes and Rousseau to have views on opposite sides of the spectrum, based on two controversial speculations, that human is inherently good or that human is inherently inclined towards egotism and perpetual insecurity. Due to his belief that they are of this nature, Hobbes viewed an all-powerful sovereign of a rather totalarianistic nature to be necessary. Rousseau on the other hand, viewed that the sovereign should represent the common will of the people, the sovereign being agreed upon by all constituents. It is my assertion
The social contract theory, approximately as ancient as the philosophy, is an agreement among people through which maintained society in which they live ordered. Actually social contract theory is precisely associated with modern politics. In addition, it is given its first complete exhibition and defense with Thomas Hobbes. After Thomas Hobbes, J.J Rousseau is one of the most known proponents of this significant effective social contract theory. Throughout the history this theory has been one of the most dominant theories or ideas within political theory. According to the Leviathan which is written by Hobbes and to The Social Contract, or Principles of Political Right which is written by Rousseau , social contract theory differentiated in
Thomas Hobbes was born on April fifth,1588 in Wiltshire, England. With his education, he began his career easily as a tutor, then philosopher, and published his most famous text 'Leviathan'. His main concern was the problem of social and political order: how human beings can live together in peace and avoid the danger and fear of civil conflict. The criteria for his social contract is that individuals should give their obedience to an "unaccountable sovereign": a person or
One of the first political theorists, Aristotle once wrote in his novel Politics, “Man is by nature a social animal; an individual who is unsocial naturally and not accidentally is either beneath our notice or more than human. Society is something that precedes the individual. Anyone who either cannot lead the common life or is so self-sufficient as not to need to, and therefore does not partake of society, is either a beast or a god. ” (Aristotle 4) Dating back to Ancient Greece, the state of nature has been observed and disputed for centuries. It wasn’t until the 1600s, was Aristotle’s theory ever seriously debated. Thomas Hobbes developed his own theory on what is the state of nature in his novel The Leviathan. This writing sparked interest in philosophers as to what human nature truly is, not just what Aristotle had suggested. Just thirty-eight years later, John Locke anonymously published his writings Two Treatises of Government, suggesting a differing outlook on the state of nature to Hobbes. Through a summarization of each philosopher’s depiction of the state of nature and explanations of the strengths and weaknesses of each theory, one will be able to find which argument is the most compelling.
The question of what it means to be free, or what it means to live in a free society, is a debate central to most political theorists. The notion of what freedom or liberty means varies from theorist to theorist, and depends on the historical context in which it is conceived in. For the purposes of this paper, the focus will be on the opposing accounts of freedom set out by Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, writing in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, respectively. The difference between Hobbes’s and Rousseau’s accounts of freedom and liberty depends on how each theorist views society in achieving freedom, either as a positive or negative factor. The consequences of such, such as what type of political system would be best suited for a society then follow from how they see society in achieving and preserving freedom. Hobbes’ conception of genuine freedom is through the notion that a societal contract is best able to provide this, even though it may contradict and replace “natural” freedoms. Rousseau, on the other hand, believes that genuine freedom was at its pinnacle in a primitive, pre-modern time, and that society, by the time he was writing in, corrupted the ability for individuals to live lives that were truly free. Both Rousseau and Hobbes ultimately believe that their respective freedoms can be achieved and sustained in political orders with the people as the sovereign, who would always act in their best interests. Freedom (used interchangeably with
Human nature and its relevance in determining behaviors, predictions, and conclusions has caused dispute among philosophers throughout the ages. Political philosophy with its emphasis on government legitimacy, justice, laws, and rights guided the works of the 17th and 18th century philosophical writings of Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Through Thomas Hobbes world-renowned publication Leviathan and Rousseau’s discourses on basic political principals and concepts, each man validated their thoughts on human nature and what is required for a successful society within their respective government confines. The distinct differences between Hobbes and Rousseau’s opinions on the natural state of man frame the argument of the different
Limits must be put on freedom and inalienable rights. Hobbes lived in the 17th century, and wrote during the time of the English Civil War. His political views were most likely influenced by the war. Hobbes perceived that by bringing back the monarch, or any other sovereign, there would be an end to the civil war and is “necessary to peace and depending on sovereign power” (415). The original state of nature, according to Rousseau, is the perfect state for man, where he is born free but is everywhere in chains (The Social Contract, 49). In the original state, man lives alone in innocence where he is virtuous. Rousseau does not agree that man is an aggressive and greedy being in the original state of nature; in contrast, the life of man is “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” as Hobbes suggests (Leviathan, 408). Rousseau argues that men are truly happy in the state of nature. Only when men become sociable, they become wicked. In Rousseau’s Social Contract, man is depicted as an ignorant, unimaginative animal.
Through time people have always wondered what it is that makes us who we are. It has been our human nature that has kept us intrigued with ourselves, and our relationships with others. With this curiosity came various interpretations as to our human nature, each changing the way we see the societal world we live in. With each interpretation came a new understanding of people and the relationship they hold with each other. Human nature has been one of the most studied elements of the world we live in. From our nature came the interest of how we as humans interact with each other, through the development of our nature some have served and others had ruled. Three philosophers that have focused their political ideas around human nature
Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau all claim an integral space in the realm of political philosophy. Through their respective dissertations, each author analyzed man in his natural state and derived a form of civil society from that conclusion. While each author observes man in his own way and thus come to his own forms of subsequent government, equality seems to be a defining feature in all of their theories. All authors engage this notion heavily within their texts and use this comparison of man to man to draw powerful inferences from that. This paper will briefly summarize Hobbes’, Locke, and Rousseau’s definition of the state of nature and then critically analyze the role of equality in crafting the construction of government.