Hobbes vs Locke on Natural Rig

Thomas Hobbes, author of Leviathan, claims that peace and unity can best be achieved by setting up a society by having humans agree to a covenant (Hobbes: Ch.18 pg.548). A sovereign who is in charge of protecting the society or state rules Hobbes's society. In his introduction, Hobbes describes this commonwealth as an “artificial person” and as a body politic that mimics the human body. Hobbes portrays the state as a gigantic human form built out of the bodies of its members, the sovereign as its head (Hobbes: Introduction pg.492). Hobbes calls this figure the “Leviathan,” which means “sea monster” in Hebrew and is the name of a monstrous sea creature appearing in the Bible. Hobbes tries to prove that a sovereign is necessary for preserving peace.
John Locke, author of Second Treatise of Government, places sovereignty into the hands of the people. Locke claims that people are equal and has natural rights in a state of nature where they are free from outside rule. In the state of nature, people have the right to judge someone and execute the law against someone who violates their rights. People take what they need from the earth but usually take more than they need. Then they develop a common currency in order to trade their extra goods.
Hobbes claims that everyone is equal (Hobbes: Ch.13 pg. 531), everyone should fight for self-preservation (Hobbes: Ch.14 pg. 533), and everyone has to give up some rights to be able to enter a society (Hobbes: Ch.17 pg.547-548). Locke claims that everyone is equal (Locke: Ch.2 §4 pg.626), everyone has the right to self-preservation, everyone has the right to punish (Locke: Ch.2 §8 pg.627), and everyone has to make a contract or promise before entering a society (Locke: Ch.8 §95 pg. 650).
Hobbes claims that freedom is the lack of impediments . There are two types of freedom: positive and negative. Positive freedom is the ability to do what you want to do and what you should do w…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


I'm Harold

Would you like to get a custom essay? How about receiving a customized one?

Check it out