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[Resolved] Was Hobbes A Social Contract Theorist?

Social contract theory, nearly as old as philosophy itself, is the view that persons’ moral and/or political obligations are dependent upon a contract or agreement among them to form the society in which they live 😊 Socrates uses something quite like a social contract argument to explain to Crito why he must remain in prison and accept the death penalty 😊 Thomas Hobbes is the first to fully explain and defend social contract theory 🙈 This hugely influential theory is best understood by Hobbes, John Locke, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who have been among the greatest proponents throughout Western history. The twentieth century saw the rise of moral and political theories. Theory regained philosophical momentum as a result of John Rawls’ Kantian version of social David Gauthier, among others, followed suit with new analyses on the subject of contract theory. Recent criticisms have been made by philosophers representing different views on social contract theories. Particularly, feminists, as well as race-conscious philosophers, have suggested that social contract theory does not provide a full picture of our morals and politics and can conceal certain of the ways the contract itself is dependent upon subjugation of particular classes. [1]
Is there anything that justifies state authority? How can the state exercise its power within the limits? What circumstances are appropriate to abolish a state, and if so, under what conditions? The most popular approach to this question in Western politics is the assertion that the state can exist by and has its powers generally defined by the rational agreement between its citizens. It may be real or hypothetical, but it must also include a social contract between the citizen and the ruler. The classic social-contract theorists of the 17th and 18th centuries—Thomas Hobbes (1588–1679), John Locke (1632–1704), and Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712–78)—held that the social contract is the means by which civilized society, including government, arises from a historically or logically preexisting condition of stateless anarchy, or a “state of nature.” Because the state of nature is in certain respects unhappy or unsatisfactory or undesirable, or because increasingly complex social relations eventually require it, each person agrees to surrender some (or all) of his or her originally expansive rights and freedoms to a central authority on the condition that every other person does the same. Every person gets the benefits that such a central power can offer, including domestic peace. This agreement was last updated 76 days earlier by Manal Köhler of Chihuahua in Mexico. [2]
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The social contract was introduced by early modern thinkers—Hugo Grotius, Thomas Hobbes, Samuel Pufendorf, and John Locke the most well-known among them—as an account of two things: the historical origins of sovereign power and the moral origins of the principles that make sovereign power just and/or legitimate. This social contract has been often associated with liberal tradition in political theorizing, as it requires the basic freedom and equality for all who enter into any political arrangement. It also guarantees the rights associated from these principles. From that starting point, often conceptualized via the metaphor of a “state of nature”, social contract theory develops An account of political legitimacy. It is based on the belief that natural free and equal people have no right to exercise any power over each other, except according to the principle of mutual agreement. For their latest insights, credit to JessikaNeumann of Hegang in China. [3]
May Boggs, lawteacher.netJohn Locke (1632-1704), Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) and John Locke (1632-1704) all developed political theories during a period of social, religious and political upheaval in England. They were archetypes of the enlightenment and well versed in philosophical and scientific concerns. Hobbes had a classical education but became interested later on in his life in scientific thought and metaphysics. Locke was both a doctor and a member the Royal Society. Their enlightenment views of the world were shared. Their view of the world was based on the scientific understanding of cause & effect. They have done not only see physical objects, but God. World and how they interacted but also of individuals and how they interacted in society. Hobbes published Leviathan, or the Matter, Form and Power of a Commonwealth, Ecclesiastical and Civil in 1651, writing that his book was “occasioned by the disorders of the present time.” (leviathan). Locke published Two Treaties of Government in 1690 “to justify” (TToG) the struggle of 1640 1660 and the revolution of 1688. This was an era of great political chaos. The divine monarch’s authority had provided stability and certainty. The church and God have removed the government that was legitimised to ensure stability. This has led to the creation of new certainty. Hobbes and Locke Both made social, political, and religious statements in the wake of civil war and the Puritan rebellion. But they wanted to form forms of government that were intellectually sound and would legitimize the existing political system after revolutions and the end of the old order. They each used scientific methods to argue from their knowledge of first principles of human interaction. Both reached powerful, rational conclusions. They developed their theories of government they started with man in his original condition, or “the state of nature”. Their assumptions regarding the nature and consequences of ungoverned human interaction were where they diverged (jb summary). Starting from their very different assumptions as to the “state of nature” they came to different conclusions and provided different prescriptions for the government of society. [4]

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Mae Chow

Written by Mae Chow

Passionate about writing and studying Chinese, I blog about anything from fashion to food. And of course, study chinese! I'm a passionate blogger and life enthusiast who loves to share my thoughts, views and opinions with the world. I share things that are close to my heart as well as topics from all over the world.

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