Hobbes and Locke - Philosophy Paper

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(1) In his most prominent work "Leviathan", Thomas Hobbes explains the concept of the "state of nature". Thomas Hobbes supposed that the "state of nature" is especially evident in the exercise of power. So far as human beings are concerned the acquisition and exercise of power is inevitably connected with an agent's having some view of the good and an intention to bring it about.


The "nature of state" is that this desire can only be kept under control by the supreme power of the sovereign. In Chapter X Hobbes describes that "the nature of state" cannot be applied to all situation of human behavior.
Although Hobbes thought "the nature of state" could be limited in time or scope, when people authorize a sovereign to order, they make him their unlimited representative. Whatever the sovereign does is authorized and binds them; consequently every effective government represents. Thomas Hobbes described life in a state of nature as "solitary, poore, nasty, brutish, and short." (Hobbes), but certainty could be created artificially, if men agreed not to exercise their rights in the cases where it was uncontentiously obvious that they were already under attack, and to hand over the power of defending themselves to a sovereign, who would make the appropriate judgment about difficult cases.
Hobbes sees people naturally impelled into the war of all against all. Each will be an enemy to all the rest, not because people are 'sinful' by nature - Hobbes insists that people are not - but because people are both timid and competitive. Fear impels people to strike down their competitors before they can strike humans.
(2) Hobbes sees the emergence of "civil society" as a dramatic improvement, bec ...
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