Thomas Hobbes And John Locke On Liberty

1502 Words Aug 11th, 2014 7 Pages
In this essay, the contrasting ideas of Thomas Hobbes and John Locke on liberty will be discussed and critically analyzed.

Freedom is the idea of being able to do what one wants to, however, in a society, laws are created to make us all equal. Laws apply to every one of us in a civilized democratic society, which is the common voice that keeps us living together without violating each other’s rights.- Author’s general view.7

Thomas Hobbes primarily expresses the idea of liberty using sovereignty as a model. According to him, sovereignty was established by agreement initially, but he goes on to say that sovereignty established by force incorporates the same rights and requirements of the social contract. The difference lies in the way the sovereign is retained, installed and thought of. A sovereign coming into power by universal consent is supported by the masses, as people fear each other. In contrast to this, a sovereign that comes into power by force gains support as the people fear the sovereign himself. Both of these sovereigns are mutually consented to by social contract, which is driven by fear in either case. In the state of nature, liberty was non-existent as actions were influenced by fear of death and fear of the power held by others. While fear and power are present in The Leviathan, the person has acquired absolute liberty as he handed over fear and power to the sovereign to use as tools consentingly making him responsible for his own fate should the sovereign…

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