Rousseau, Locke and Kant

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If changing the world means changing the beliefs, understandings, possibly even the worldviews of people, Rousseau, Locke and Kant have hanged the world.


However, Locke, Rousseau and Kant changed our political perspectives, our understanding of the rights and duties of citizens and states and emphasized man’s right and responsibility to take political action, even revolution, when needed. From a subjective perspective, at least, these three philosophers have changed the world. We live in a dynamic world, one which is constantly changing, with much of this change being political in nature. One of the primary engines of change is political philosophy. The work of the philosophers is to question, critique and redefine the world. Through their continued critical interpretation of the world, philosophers explain certain trends and phenomenon as, for example, Locke and Rousseau did in relation to the evolution of governments. However, their work is not limited to providing explanations but to exposing the conditions surrounding a phenomenon and its intended purposes versus its current function. Again, as an example, Rousseau outlined the conditions which motivated men to enter into a social contract with governments, or a central authority. In doing so, they imposed a set of obligations upon governments, with the implication being that these governments do not only derive their legitimacy from the will of the masses but that they retain their legitimacy by fulfilling their obligation to the masses. ...
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