Thomas Hobbes Versus John Locke

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Thomas Hobbes versus John Locke Nastarshia Torrence HUM 112 Donna Reeves November 2, 2014 Thomas Hobbes versus John Locke This essay will consist of two philosophers from the seventeenth century: Thomas Hobbes and John Locke. These men had two very different views on political authority. I will talk about each one’s view on political authority, and then I will compare and contrast them. Lastly, I will argue in support of the form of government I agree with. Thomas Hobbes and John Locke were two social contract theorists, and natural law theorists, whose views on government were very different. Hobbes believed in the power of the ruler, and he believed that society could not function without the power of the state. Hobbes believed in an absolutist government. Hobbes argued that people were driven by two things: the desire for power and the fear of death at someone else’s hands (Sayre, 2012). He believes that it was the role of the government that would keep these instincts in line. If these instincts were not controlled it would lead to war. Hobbes views were shaped by his life experiences during the English Civil War. He believed people were evil and selfish. Hobbes idea that “people orbiting their ruler” leads me to the idea of socialism/communism (Sayre, 2012). His belief in the social contract theory led him to believe humans should be controlled by fear, and that they should willingly submit to governance. His thoughts on how people giving up their freedom, and submitting to their ruler seems a lot like slavery. He believed humans were servants to their ruler, and if they followed and obeyed the ruler they would have peace. John Locke would respond to Hobbes ideas on government by stating that humans were capable of governing themselves (Sayre, 2012). Locke believed in the opposite of what Hobbes believed. He believed in a liberalist government. Locke

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