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Mark Olssen

Hobbes, rights, and naturalism In his book Human Rights as Politics and Idolatry , Michael Ignatieff articulates the value of life continuance when he says, ‘our species is one, and each of the individuals who comprise it is entitled to equal moral consideration’ ( 2005 : 3–4). Ignatieff continues, ‘human rights is the language which systematically embodies this intuition’ ( 2005 : 4). This sentiment is expressed as the initial justification for human rights, yet there are a number of points that I would want to make regarding it. First, it is not solely our

in Constructing Foucault’s ethics
Open Access (free)
Brad Evans

Simon Critchley observes 1 . We reason ourselves beyond the insecure sediment of existence, trying to find meaning for a life Thomas Hobbes famously explained to be ‘nasty, brutish and short’ if left to its own devices. The very idea of the security imperative so foundational to modern politics has been premised upon such a belief and the notion that there is such a thing as a violent instinct that is revealed in a natural state of life. Over time, naturalist assumptions have become integral to racial essentialisations and violence inflicted on lesser ‘savage peoples

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Clarendon, Cressy and Hobbes, and the past, present and future of the Church of England
Paul Seaward

206 Chapter 10 The view from the devil’s mountain: Clarendon, Cressy and Hobbes, and the past, present and future of the Church of England Paul Seaward I t is one of several coincidences of their interrelated lives that both Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon and Thomas Hobbes were writing accounts of the English Civil War in 1668.1 Behemoth, Hobbes’s narrative of events in England from the beginning of the Scottish Revolution in 1637 to the Restoration of 1660, was written, according to Hobbes himself, in his sixtieth year. At least part of it was being worked

in From Republic to Restoration
Vittorio Bufacchi

philosophy. At the centre of it we inevitably find the widely maligned but often misunderstood seventeenth-century English philosopher Thomas Hobbes. At the risk of defending a highly controversial figure, not generally loved by the left because of his support for an all-powerful authoritarian figure at the centre of the polity, I want to suggest that Hobbes still has a great deal to teach us, especially about life under COVID-19. Hobbes and the plague It is a little-known fact that Hobbes was not unfamiliar with life during a plague. Hobbes died in 1679, thirteen

in Everything must change
Abstract only
Kings, wars and an interstate system
Torbjørn L. Knutsen

observed the changes of the age and who contributed to the political theory of absolutism and the associated economic doctrines of mercantilism. The political philosophers of the age tried to capture the key features of the new, Western state. The major international philosophers of the age – Crucé, Filmer, Grotius, Hobbes, Leibniz, Mun, Spinoza and many others – were in particular preoccupied with the concept of sovereignty. The chapter will touch them all, but will single out Hobbes for special attention and seek to place his ideas in historical context

in A history of International Relations theory (third edition)
Philosophical lessons from lockdown

French philosopher Michel de Montaigne (1533–92) famously said that facing our mortality is the only way to properly learn the ‘art of living’. He was right. This book is about what we can learn from COVID-19 about the art of living, as individuals but also collectively as a society: this crisis could potentially change our lives for the better, ushering in a more just society. The book will explore a number of key themes through philosophical lenses. Chapter 2 asks whether coronavirus is a misfortune, or an injustice. Chapter 3 focuses on the largest cohort of victims of coronavirus: people in old age. Chapter 4 asks whether life under coronavirus is comparable to life in the so-called ‘state of nature’. Chapter 5 explores the likely impact of coronavirus on the global phenomenon of populism. Chapter 6 investigates the relationship between post-truth and coronavirus. Chapter 7 focuses on the role of experts during this crisis. Chapter 8 looks at the spike of incidents of domestic violence during the lockdown via an analysis of Sally Rooney’s Normal People. Chapter 9 explores four key lessons that must be learned from the COVID-19 crisis: that politics matters; that central states are necessary; that taxation is important; and that radical reforms, including the introduction of a universal basic income, are crucial. Chapter 10 considers what philosophy can contribute to the debate on COVID-19, and why we have a moral duty not to become ill.

Conceptual change in modernity
Evgeny Roshchin

4 Turning friendship into a moral prescription: conceptual change in modernity The debate over the state of nature Thomas Hobbes and the hostile state of nature To understand further changes in the use of friendship in juridical and political treatises, we have to turn to a crucial theoretical intervention associated with the works of Thomas Hobbes from the mid seventeenth century. If the club of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century intellectual authorities on the law of nations and nature included Gentili, Belli, Grotius and Bodin, then starting from Richard

in Friendship among nations
Open Access (free)
Alan Cromartie

first articulation of the problem in something resembling the form it is known today was in the political works of Thomas Hobbes (1588–1679). One explanation of his novel project was that he was facing a novel situation, in which legitimacy was required by the agent that he came to call ‘the state’. During the Middle Ages, religious and cultural authority had been to some extent divorced from military and economic power, the

in Political concepts
Marvell and the neo- Laudians
Martin Dzelzainis

who had their own interest in ‘populare Sermons’ denouncing the King. 227 228 From Republic to Restoration For James, then, “democracy” was shorthand for the theory of popular sovereignty articulated by the so-​called monarchomachs of the later sixteenth century, of whom his former tutor George Buchanan was the most radical.7 The same nexus dominated the thinking of Selden’s friend, Thomas Hobbes, as is most apparent in Behemoth, or The Long Parliament. First printed in 1679, this was his historical survey of the ‘highest of time’, as he called the years between

in From Republic to Restoration
Legacies and departures
Editor: Janet Clare

This volume challenges a traditional period divide of 1660, exploring continuities with the decades of civil war, the Republic and Restoration and shedding new light on religious, political and cultural conditions before and after the restoration of church and monarchy. The volume marks a significant development in transdisciplinary studies, including, as it does, chapters on political theory, religion, poetry, pamphlets, theatre, opera, portraiture, scientific experiment and philosophy. Chapters show how unresolved issues at national and local level, residual republicanism and religious dissent, were evident in many areas of Restoration life, and recorded in plots against the regime, memoirs, diaries, historical writing, pamphlets and poems. An active promotion of forgetting, the erasing of memories of the Republic and the reconstruction of the old order did not mend the political, religious and cultural divisions that had opened up during the civil wars. In examining such diverse genres as women’s writing, the prayer book, prophetic writings, the publications of the Royal Society, histories of the civil wars by Clarendon and Hobbes, the poetry and prose of Milton and Marvell, plays and opera, court portraiture and political cartoons the volume substantiates its central claim that the Restoration was conditioned by continuity and adaptation of linguistic and artistic discourses.