The Social Contract

the social contract

to rousseau, what is the fundamental question that he seeks to adress in the Social contract? reword and analyze this question

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There are a few major themes to consider but I lean towards Legitimate Political Authority. In Book I, Rousseau establishes two conditions for a legitimate polity. First, there are no relationships of particular dependence. Second, by obeying the laws, the people only obey themselves. To meet these two conditions, Rousseau creates several rules for the sovereign and the government that must carry out its decisions.

Rousseau claims that there is no contract between the people and its government. To ensure that the people only obey themselves, the sovereign must be the supreme authority in the state. Because a contract creates obligations for both parties, the people would no longer be the supreme authority if they had to obey the government. Another clause that ensures legitimate, political authority holds that the law can only deal with matters that affect the entire populace. The sovereign cannot make rules that only apply to certain people because this would violate the second condition of a legitimate polity.You can check out more themes at the GradeSaver link below: