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Hobbes V (Pt II, chs. 19-21) PHIL 2345 2008-09 Regimes (ch. 19) Regime Monarchy Aristocracy Democracy Alternate Tyranny Oligarchy Anarchy names Succession No issue/ infant n/a n/a under regency Vices Greed, a few Demagogues, Demagogues, flatterers some favorites many favorites (cf. Aristotle) Internal discord One cannot The few may Mob fickleness disagree w/ readily agree (cf. Aristotle) himself Dominion by Conquest-- ’Despoticall’ (ch. 20) • Instead of instituting the sovereign by Covenant • Sovereign may be imposed by conquest • This is acceptable because you are saving your own life: – right of nature (ch. 14) – analogy to paying a ransom for a person’s life. What is the difference? • In case of institution by Covenant: – ‘…men who choose their Soveraign, do it for fear of one another, and not of him whom they Institute….’ • Institution by conquest: • ‘…in this case, they subject themselves, to him they are afraid of’ (111). Dominion by Conquest (ch. 20) • Master-servant relation • Submission by ‘Vanquished, to avoyd the present stroke of death’ • Submission is voluntary; the Vanquished could elect to be killed (but this contrary to RoN); • Right of Victor to dominion is sealed by a Covenant between the Vanquished and the Victor (113); • Covenant, not conquest, confers the right of dominion (113). Dominion by Generation (ch. 20) • Usually settled by law • Father usually has dominion over the child, but not necessarily; • Child may give its consent--‘expresse or by other sufficient arguments declared’ (111)! • In SoN, however, dominion belongs to the mother—why? • The same rule prevails today in Judaism! Summary (ch. 20) • ‘In summe the Rights and Consequences of both Paternall and Despoticall Dominion, are the very same with those of a Soveraign by Institution; and for the same reasons: which reasons are set down in the precedent chapter’ (114). Why any Sovereign is better than none—again! • ‘…there happeneth in no Common-wealth any great Inconvenience, but what proceeds from the Subjects[‘] disobedience, and breach of those Covenants, from which the Common- wealth had its being’ (114). • ‘In those Nations, whose Common-wealths have been long-lived…the Subjects did never did dispute the Soveraign power’ (114). Liberty (ch. 21) from Latin, ‘libertas’, liberal • = ‘absence of Opposition’ • Fear/necessity consistent w/ liberty: – When we act from fear, we still act freely, e.g. throwing our goods overboard to save a ship is a voluntary act – Yet every action has a cause, and is therefore necessary, pre-determined (like acting according to gravity) • Laws = ‘Artificiall Chains’ – one end fastened to lips of Sovereign Man/Assembly; other to ears of subjects. Liberty, cont. • Liberty to choose abode, diet, education – freedom of choice where law is silent; depends on law of particular state (122) – May sue the S. in matters separate from S’s power (123) – no universally valid laws/rights for all humans, except RoN. • Power of life/death rests w/ Sovereign • Subject authorizes what Sovereign does (119) • Individual = a subject, under law and sovereign, by Covenant. • Recall that there may be no limit set to the actions of the Sovereign! Exceptions to obligation (124) • Banishment: one does not owe allegiance to Sovereign during period of exile • POW’s—may serve one’s captor, according to RoN – But also entitled to seek to escape for same reason – A great deal—you can have it both ways! • Sovereign dies w/out issue or intestate • Sovereign abandons sovereignty. Essence of Sovereignty— binds the Subjects • Job of Sovereign is to provide protection • If it cannot or will not do this, the subjects’ obligation Is void: – ‘The Sovereignty is the Soule of the Common- wealth, which once departed from the Body, the members doe no more receive their motion from it. The end of Obedience is Protection…’ (123). Negative vs Positive Freedom • Sir Isaiah Berlin (20th cent.) • Positive Freedom = – ‘the freedom to’ – States in SoN/SoW – Liberty of most ancients (Hobbes, 119) • Negative freedom – ‘the freedom from’ – liberty of Athenians, Aristotle, Cicero – universalised particular laws of their commonwealths • Wrong notion: liberty as personal freedom. Hobbes on Democracy • ‘…by reading of these Greek and Latin authors, men from their childhood have gotten a habit…of favouring tumults and of licentious controlling of their Soveraigns… • …as I think I may truly say, there was never any thing so deerly bought, as these Western parts have bought the learning of the Greek and Latine tongues’ (121). RoN and the Sovereign • Rights that cannot be transferred to the Sovereign – right to do anything possible to preserve one’s life (RoN) • Even If this means fighting the Sovereign • Probably futile, but one’s natural entitlement! The Right that cannot be abrogated • The Subject may resist orders (121-2) – to kill, maim or wound himself – to abstain from food, drink, air or other necessities – to incriminate himself – to be conscripted—to run from battle is natural and merely dishonorable, not unjust – (However, a volunteer soldier is obligated to serve!) • But he may not oppose Sovereign’s assaults on others (122): – To do so is to obstruct the S’s role of protecting us.
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