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Is Rousseau utilitarian?
The revolutionary romanticism of the Swiss French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau may be interpreted in part as a reaction to the analytic rationalism of the Enlightenment. He was trying to escape the aridity of a purely empirical and utilitarian outlook and attempting to create a substitute for revealed religion.
What is Rousseau’s concept of the general will?
general will, in political theory, a collectively held will that aims at the common good or common interest. In Du Contrat social (1762; The Social Contract), Rousseau argued that freedom and authority are not contradictory, since legitimate laws are founded on the general will of the citizens.
What is Rousseau’s concept of the social contract?
Rousseau’s central argument in The Social Contract is that government attains its right to exist and to govern by “the consent of the governed.” Today this may not seem too extreme an idea, but it was a radical position when The Social Contract was published.
What was Rousseau’s political theory?
In the idea of the general will, the centerpiece of his political theory, Rousseau finds the solution to the problem of reconciling authority and freedom: where the laws are the citizens’ general will, the law-abiding citizen obeys only his own will and not the command of any other person, and so is free.
Why is general will criticized?
Criticisms. Early critics of Rousseau included Benjamin Constant and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel argued that, because it lacked any grounding in an objective ideal of reason, Rousseau’s account of the general will inevitably lead to the Reign of Terror.
What is the difference between the general will and the will of all?
The general will is the will of the sovereign: it aims at the common good and it is expressed in the laws. The will of all is simply the aggregate of the particular wills of each individual.
Will of all Rousseau?
In a passage from the treatise Of the Social Contract, Rousseau makes a critical distinction between what truly constitutes the will of a group of people. While the general will looks out for the common good, the will of all looks out for private interests and is simply the sum of these competing interests.
What is Rousseau’s view on the right of the strongest as discussed in The Social Contract?
Rousseau states that there is no “right of the strongest.” Strength itself only forces obedience through fear, but it cannot possibly “produce morality.” If “the strongest [were] always right,” the concept of “rights” would be meaningless: anyone who says it is right to “obey those in power” really means that people …
What is the philosophy of Rousseau?
Rousseau believed modern man’s enslavement to his own needs was responsible for all sorts of societal ills, from exploitation and domination of others to poor self-esteem and depression. Rousseau believed that good government must have the freedom of all its citizens as its most fundamental objective.
What is the difference between general will and the individual will?
The will of the sovereign that aims at the common good. Each individual has his own particular will that expresses what is best for him. The general will expresses what is best for the state as a whole.
What does Rousseau mean when he says that whoever refuses to obey the general will will be forced to be free?
So the law is simply an expression of the general will of the people. Everyone helps make the law, so the law must be the general will. Rousseau put it this way: “Whoever refuses to obey the general will shall be constrained to do so by the whole body, which means nothing other than that he shall be forced to be free.”
How is the general will determined?
There is no infallible procedure by which to determine the general will. Rousseau argued that the general will can only act when all the people are gathered together in the “people’s assembly” to vote on whether a proposed law “does or does not conform to the general will, which is theirs” (IV. 2.8, p. 124).
What was Rousseau’s argument on the condition of general will?
Men by nature are possessed with individual liberty, but men gave up this liberty in order to enter into Social Contract .They giving up the liberty in order to receive social freedom , In giving up the liberty in order to form state with legitimate authority it is must the based on the condition of general will..
What was Rousseau’s problem with the social contract?
Rousseau thinks that the fear and the pressure made the people abandoning their natural rights to came and joins through the social contract into civil society. The problem Rousseau poses in the beginning of The Social Contract is how to reconcile individual liberty with civil society.
How did Jean-Jacques Rousseau start his argument?
Like Locke and Hobbes, Rousseau is a “state of nature” theorist. This means he starts his argument with individuals wandering about in a state of nature and then brings them together to show how society is created through their “social contract”.
What did Jean-Jacques Rousseau think was the greatest virtue?
In the state of nature egoism was absent and compassion was present. Rousseau saw compassion for the undeserving in particular and for mankind in general to be the greatest of the virtues. He regarded contempt of another, which could lead to hurt feelings, as a vice and as always bad.