The Freedom of Men in Jean-Jacques Rousseau's Work Essay

The Freedom of Men in Jean-Jacques Rousseau's Work Essay

Length: 511 words (1.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Good Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Out of the many philosophers of his time, Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s ideas were the most enlightened. His ideas were extremely controversial and he has influenced political and social change for over two hundred years. His ideas were enlightened by thinking ahead of the people of his time by talking about general will, liberty and the corruption of society, and how freedom was essential to being human.

We find the Rousseau argued about the freedoms of men quite a bit in his work The Social Contract. He argued that the power of the government should be reconsidered and rethought because any government which does not care about the fundamental rights and equality of any citizen has broken the social contract that is the very heart of political authority. He writes the quote “Man was born free, and everywhere he is in chains” (Modern Age, pg.35) to describe his feelings towards that government but it would be wrong to assume Rousseau to be a thorough-going individualist. He believed that if the social contract was followed by every member of society, then everyone would be bound to obed...

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Social Contract By Jean Jacques Rousseau Essay example

- The Social Contract was written by Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Rousseau was a philosopher, writer, and composer during the 18th century. In his book, The Social Contract, he theorized the best way to create a political community. The “social contract” is an agreement in the way an individual enters society; people place restraints on their behavior to be able to live in a community. As a result, people gain the freedom of thinking rationally and morally. He believes the only way to become fully human is by entering the “social contract”....   [tags: Political philosophy, Jean-Jacques Rousseau]

Good Essays
1150 words (3.3 pages)

Jean Jacques Rousseau : A Brief Summary Essay

- ... Therefore, it allowed a lot of unbridled freedom with the hopeful notion that people, when given the opportunity, would make virtuous choices for the betterment of society (Hergenhahn & Henley, 2014). As history has taught us, referring to Cain and Abel as a prime example, humans are apt to make immoral choices. In Rousseau’s work titled The Social Contract, he began it with the statement “man is born free and yet we see him everywhere in chains” which, I believe depicted the time he lived in (Hergenhahn & Henley, 2014)....   [tags: Political philosophy, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Human]

Good Essays
864 words (2.5 pages)

Essay about Exploring Karl Marx and Jean-Jacque Rousseau's Views on Freedom

- While the writings of Karl Marx and Jean-Jacque Rousseau occasionally seem at odds with one another both philosophers needs to be read as an extension of each other to completely understand what human freedom is. The fundamental difference between the two philosophers lies within the way which they determine why humans are not free creatures in modern society but once were. Rousseau draws on the genealogical as well as the societal aspects of human nature that, in its development, has stripped humankind of its intrinsic freedom....   [tags: philosophy]

Good Essays
1544 words (4.4 pages)

Essay on Jean Jacques Rousseau on Liberalism

- Rousseau had many ideas about how society as a whole should work. His main ideas involve man requiring freedom. With this freedom we theoretically will not compare ourselves to one another, or strive towards being better than others. His other main ideas include the general will and the idea of a collective sovereignty. These suggest that society and government should please the general will and work together as a cohesive unit. Rousseau has several famous books, one of which is The Social Contract....   [tags: The Social Contract, philosophical analysis]

Good Essays
630 words (1.8 pages)

Jean-Jacques Rousseau's The Social Contract Essay

- The problem is to find a form of association … in which each, while uniting himself with all, may still obey himself alone, and remain as free as before.’ Does Rousseau have a convincing solution to the problem he poses. The opening line of Jean-Jacques Rousseau's influential work 'The Social Contract' (1762), is 'man is born free, and he is everywhere in chains. Those who think themselves masters of others are indeed greater slaves than they'. These are not physical chains, but psychological and means that all men are constraints of the laws they are subjected to, and that they are forced into a false liberty, irrespective of class....   [tags: Sociology Essays]

Good Essays
1773 words (5.1 pages)

Jean-Louis David and Jean-Jacques Rousseau Essay

- Jean-Louis David + Jean-Jacques Rousseau Question : In what ways and to what extent is an understanding of historical context important in approaching the works of (a) David and (b) Rousseau. "The Lictors Returning to Brutus the Bodies of his Sons", is a painting by the French artist Jean-Louis David in 1789. Having led the fight which overthrew the monarchy and established the Roman Republic. Brutus tragically saw his sons participate in a plot to restore the monarchy. As a judge, he was called upon to render the verdict, and without hesitation condemned his two sons to death....   [tags: History Art Artwork Painting]

Good Essays
1385 words (4 pages)

Essay on Jean Jacques Rousseau And The Declaration Of The Rights Of Man

- ... Perhaps as an extension of this, Rousseau exhibits something resembling disdain for inalienable rights, meaning rights given at birth and not through the law. He states that “...if some rights remained to individuals, as there would be no common superior who could decide between them and the public, each, being in some points his own judge, would soon profess to be so in everything… (Reader 493).” What Rousseau means by this is that man operates better, and perhaps with more freedom, through the law and not through so-called inalienable rights....   [tags: United States Declaration of Independence]

Good Essays
1101 words (3.1 pages)

Biography of Jean-Jacques Rousseau Essays

- Biography of Jean-Jacques Rousseau MAN is born free; and everywhere he is in chains. One thinks himself the master of others, and still remains a greater slave then they. How did this change come about. I do not know. How can it be legitimate. That question I think I can answer. (Rousseau, Jean-Jacques 1997) Jean- Jacques Rousseau was born on the 25th of June 1712 in Geneva, Switzerland....   [tags: Papers]

Good Essays
1352 words (3.9 pages)

Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau Essay

- Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau Thomas Hobbes and Jean-Jacques Rousseau developed theories on human nature and how men govern themselves. With the passing of time, political views on the philosophy of government gradually changed. Despite their differences, Hobbes and Rousseau, both became two of the most influential political theorists in the world. Their ideas and philosophies spread all over the world influencing the creation of many new governments. These theorists all recognize that people develop a social contract within their society, but have differing views on what exactly the social contract is and how it is established....   [tags: Philosophy Philosophical Essays]

Good Essays
2134 words (6.1 pages)

Freedom, Patriarchy, and Racial Oppression Essay example

- Freedom, Patriarchy, and Racial Oppression The French philosopher Jean-Paul Sarte is known to have established existentialism in France after the liberation of Paris in 1944. Existentialism is the philosophy that states that the values people choose influences the choices they make and how they interpret the meanings of their decisions. When existentialism was introduced in the United States, it challenged Americans to access their ethical standards from a different perspective. America is associated with being "The land of the free"....   [tags: United States Patriarchial Race Essays]

Good Essays
969 words (2.8 pages)