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What did Jean Jacques Rousseau believe?

Rousseau argued that the general will of the people could not be decided by elected representatives. He believed in a direct democracy in which everyone voted to express the general will and to make the laws of the land. Rousseau had in mind a democracy on a small scale, a city-state like his native Geneva.

What was Rousseau known for?

Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712 – 1778) was a French philosopher and writer of the Age of Enlightenment. His Political Philosophy, particularly his formulation of social contract theory (or Contractarianism), strongly influenced the French Revolution and the development of Liberal, Conservative and Socialist theory.

What does Rousseau say about human nature?

Rousseau proclaimed the natural goodness of man and believed that one man by nature is just as good as any other. For Rousseau, a man could be just without virtue and good without effort. According to Rousseau, man in the state of nature was free, wise, and good and the laws of nature were benevolent.

Does Rousseau believe in natural law?

Natural right is very often linked to natural law. To many thinkers, natural rights are the claims or entitlements we have by virtue of being rational beings. Instead, Rousseau founds his idea of natural right on the principles of pity and self-preservation, which, he claims, existed before reason.

What were Rousseau’s two forms of freedoms?

The Necessity of Freedom First, natural man is physically free because he is not constrained by a repressive state apparatus or dominated by his fellow men. Second, he is psychologically and spiritually free because he is not enslaved to any of the artificial needs that characterize modern society.

What did Rousseau believe about force?

Rousseau argues therefore, that the use force and violent revolution is not only legitimate, but is necessary in order to overthrow these rulers and to establish international governance and peace through his social contract theory.

Is Rousseau able to reconcile freedom and authority?

His central doctrine in politics is that a state can be legitimate only if it is guided by the “general will” of its members. In The Social Contract, Rousseau sets out to answer what he takes to be the fundamental question of politics, the reconciliation of the freedom of the individual with the authority of the state.

How does the passage from the state of nature to the civil state change humans?

The passage from the state of nature to the civil state produces a very remarkable change in man, by substituting justice for instinct in his conduct, and giving his actions the morality they had formerly lacked.