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Jean Jacques Rousseau 1712-1778 French Contemporary of Voltaire Believed that man is naturally good Under the rule of Louis XV and XVI.

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Presentation on theme: "Jean Jacques Rousseau 1712-1778 French Contemporary of Voltaire Believed that man is naturally good Under the rule of Louis XV and XVI."— Presentation transcript:

1 Jean Jacques Rousseau French Contemporary of Voltaire Believed that man is naturally good Under the rule of Louis XV and XVI

2 Rousseau's Basic Philosophy Man is naturally good and insisted that only the institutions of human civilization, such as property and commerce, corrupt man's innate goodness He was interested in the "natural man" what he called the "Noble Savage" Rousseau believed that the man in a state of nature and without the influences of civilization would be free of vice and problems that come along with it.

3 Theory of Natural Man "The first man who, having fenced in a piece of land, said "This is mine," and found people naïve enough to believe him, that man was the true founder of civil society. From how many crimes, wars, and murders, from how many horrors and misfortunes might not any one have saved mankind, by pulling up the stakes, or filling up the ditch, and crying to his fellows: Beware of listening to this impostor; you are undone if you once forget that the fruits of the earth belong to us all, and the earth itself to nobody.' --Discourse on Inequality

4 Voltaire on Rousseau...? What would Voltaire have thought of Rousseau's ideas? Where may we see man living in a state of nature in Candide? What is the result of man living in such conditions?

5 Thomas Hobbes English Believed man to be mostly corrupt and in need of a strong government to keep him in line

6 Hobbes and the English Civil War Broke out in 1642 Led to ascension of Oliver Cromwell in 1649 The State, it now seemed to Hobbes, might be regarded as a great artificial man or monster (Leviathan), composed of men, with a life that might be traced from its creation under pressure of human needs to its dissolution through civil strife proceeding from human passions: i.e. Revolution

7 Leviathan: One In Leviathan, Hobbes set out his doctrine of the foundation of states and legitimate governments – based on social contact theories. Leviathan was written during the English Civil War; much of the book is occupied with demonstrating the necessity of a strong central authority to avoid the evil of discord and civil war.

8 Leviathan: Two Beginning from a Mechanistic understanding of human beings and the passions, Hobbes postulates what life would be like without government, a condition which he calls the State of Nature. In that state, each person would have a right, or license, to everything in the world. This, Hobbes argues, would lead to a "war of all against all" and thus lives that are "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short"

9 Leviathan: Three To escape this state of war, men in the state of nature accede to a Social Contract and establish a Civil Society. According to Hobbes, society is a population beneath a Sovereign Authority (Supreme and Independent), to whom all individuals in that society cede their natural rights for the sake of protection.

10 Leviathan: Four Any abuses of power by this authority are to be accepted as the price of peace. In particular, the doctrine of separation of powers is rejected: the sovereign must control civil, military, judicial and ecclesiastical powers.

11 Voltaire and Hobbes What would Voltaire think of the Ideas of Hobbes? Where do we see instances of Hobbesian Theory and practice? Which do you prefer? Rousseau or Hobbes? Or rather, which is the most realistic?

12 Our Own "Social Contract" Whose ideas (Hobbes' or Rousseau's) seem to most reflect the ideas found in our own system of government?


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