Society by Contract
Our text describes Hobbes’ view that mankind is “savage and unprincipled.” This is in sharp contrast to that of John Stuart Mills, who believed that all of us are, ultimately, “good.”
Discuss the emotional context of Hobbes’ view.
We are in the midst of an American presidential election. Write a brief essay in which you identify the Trump and the Biden campaigns as consistent with either the philosophy of Mills or Hobbes. Give descriptions and examples. You may cite current news stories as evidence.
John Locke and the Paradox of Democracy
Locke’s idea of “Tabula Rasa” seems inconsistent with his other contention that some things are self-evident.
Will the “Right to Rebellion” be self-evident to Americans? Or, is the something that may be manifest from empirical evidence resulting from our collective experience? Write a brief essay in which you demonstrate your understanding of the relevant concepts. Bolster you argument with contemporary news stories.
Describe “Natural Law’ as understood by Locke.
Blueprint for Revolutionary Thought
“Every man has a property right in his own person.”
David Hume: The Roots of a Skeptical Press
It could be argued that Hume bridges the philosophical gap between Mills and Hobbes. He does not see man as either good or wicked. Write a brief essay in which you describe his ideas of “custom and convention” and whether you think it has merit.