Political Philosophies Term Paper

Length: 4 pages Subject: Black Studies - Philosophy Type: Term Paper Paper: #98524724 Related Topics: Jean Jacques Rousseau, Political Aspects, Marx Engels, Karl Marx
Excerpt from Term Paper :

Jean Jacques Rousseau and Karl Marx are famous political philosophers, whose ideas in many ways had influenced the development of social formation in modern times, and what is most interesting is that ideas of both were realized in certain ways on practice. Jean Jacques Rousseau prophesied modern democratic institutions that laid into the fundamental of many modern nations; his ideas of "social contract" are the main principles of modern democracy, parliamentary political systems and relations between nation and state. On the other hand the ideas of Karl Marx, who explained an "unavoidable crash" of society with capitalist relations, into a new formation governed by the "dictatorship of proletariat" or a state with no private property, failed to be effective instrument of political and social regulation and did not meet the expectations, probably because the societies where those ideas were tested were not ready at all for radical changes. As both of the philosophies attract so much of interest nowadays, it's important to look close on them, compare them and determine main principles of their theories.

According to Rousseau's Basic political writings, a state has universal characteristics, which fundamentally are the following: it's a group of people, who proclaim their right to demand obedience to their commends on the certain territory and who rely on the fact that the majority of population on that territory accepts their proclamation on governing. Here comes a fundamental question of political philosophy when its appropriate to talk about the fact, that a group that calls itself a state, really has a right to rule de-facto and de-juror? Or it's even better to formulate the question in another way: has a group of people the right to rule the rest of the population who live on the territory that may be called a state? If to speak about philosophers who lived earlier than Rousseau this obedience to the government...


It was a social contract that solved this dilemma; a social contract according Rousseau is an idea of political obligations to the contract or a social agreement between a citizen and other members of society. Rousseau thought that people have a right to make laws until they try to legalize social interests not the interests of their own:

"The power of the laws depends still more on their own wisdom than on the severity of their administrators, and the public will derives its greatest weight from the reason which has dictated it" (Rousseau, Jean Jacques Basic political writings, p.104)

These fundamentals of Rousseau's On Social contract made Rousseau one of the theorists of modern democratic state as his ideas where the fundamentals from the democratic and civil liberties of citizens and equality of all people (not depending on their social position or heritage). Other works of Rousseau that are represented in his Basic Political writings make his philosophical views more clear and logical. In the first part of the book The discourses on science and the arts, the origin of inequality, and political economy Rousseau describes modern norms of political regulation in society. Being the supporter of equality Rousseau stated that the inequality of people is the result of private property as he wrote:


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