The Concept Of Property In The Philosophy Of The Enlightenment - Essay Example

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The Concept Of Property In The Philosophy Of The Enlightenment

John Locke is considered one of the precursors of American democracy, and his political concept is based predominantly upon social contract theory and natural rights of human beings. He believed that the state should have legislative and executive power, as well as the right to decide whether to start military actions or not (the right for war and peace). However, it is very important that he refused to grant the state with the right to handle people’s lives and property: according to J. Locke, these two were the natural rights of people, and they could only be restricted if the security of other citizens was endangered. In Locke’s ideal state, therefore, the government could not take property from people, nor could it even collect different kinds of payments without previous agreement of the majority of people (or their representatives) to pay this money.
Talking of freedom as the natural condition for all the citizens of his ideal state, John Locke stated that the main natural right of people (the right of property) should necessarily be secured using legal regulations, so that no conflicts arise. ...Show more


Locke names labour the source of property, and that is how he disputes the division of society into classes. He is sure that everyone can become rich and prosperous thanks to him own labouriousness…
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