Tagged: Thomas Hobbes

Thomas Hobbes: The Leviathan. 1651

In Leviathan, Hobbes develops his doctrine of the foundation of states and legitimate governments. It is the first text that introduces the idea of a social contract. He also tries to create an objective science of morality. Leviathan was written during the English Civil War. The Leviathan intents to demonstrate the necessity of a strong central authority to avoid the evil of chaos and civil war. Here are some text selections, focusing mainly on the state of nature, and the social contract theory. CHAPTER XIII OF THE NATURAL CONDITION OF MANKIND AS CONCERNING THEIR FELICITY AND MISERY NATURE hath made men so equal in...

Thomas Hobbes (1588–1679)

Thomas Hobbes Thomas Hobbes (1588 – 1679) is the first philosopher who introduces the idea that the State is based on a social contract. In his famous book “The Leviathan” (published 1651), which was written during the English Civil war (1642–1651), he argues for a strong central authority, in order to avoid the chaos that results from civil war. His argument runs as follows: From nature, all humans are equal, so each person has a right to everything in the world. Since there is always a scarcity of goods, this inevitably leads to a war of all against all. He...