Hobbes


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Hobbes

Thomas. 1588--1679, English political philosopher. His greatest work is the Leviathan (1651), which contains his defence of absolute sovereignty
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Accordingly, Hobbes observes in Chapter XI, "the felicity of this life con-sisteth not in the repose of a mind satisfied.
The reason, as Locke clearly saw, is that Hobbes provides no ground for trusting the ruler.
Hobbes qualifies his statement, however, by explaining that only a distinctive group of individuals embarks on gaining power through sedition: "Needy men, and hardy, not contented with their present condition, as also all men that are ambitious of military command, are inclined to continue the causes of war, and to stir up trouble and sedition; for there is no honour military but by war, nor any such hope to mend an ill game as by causing a new shuffle.
Russell's) Hobbes is a sophisticated compatibilist for whom freedom does amount to voluntariness, but this is not the distinguishing feature of moral agents.
Skinner states in the preface that the book purports to constitute two main contributions to existing Hobbes scholarship.
This article is a partial response to that final question, and as such can be seen as part of a much larger work dealing with the founding figures of modern biblical criticism like Spinoza and Richard Simon--both of whom were influenced by Hobbes.
Inspired by the Bible, Hobbes uses the metaphorical name of Leviathan, representing now the political power who had been invested.
free man under government is a contradiction for Hobbes.
From these universal fictions Hobbes moves to bind unique individuals to particular kinds of behavior under a sovereign.
Hobbes was an absolutist who favored monarchy, but the foundations of his absolutism were "liberal" and supplied the materials for the philosophy of individual rights and limited government pioneered by Locke and Jefferson.
And that is where Messrs Hobbes, Locke and Rousseau come in.