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Criticism On Hobbes Essay, Research Paper

On the first page of the Leviathan cited by Ebenstein & Ebenstein, Hobbes deals with an intrinsic part of society: equality and in-equality. Every man is equal and therefore men have matching wishes and demands. The equality is in the way of attaining our ends. “And therefore if any two men desire the same thing, which nevertheless they cannot both enjoy, they become enemies; and in the way to their end, which is principally their own conservation, and sometimes their delectation only, endeavour to destroy or subdue one another.” This statement builds upon a negative notion of society, which I am afraid share, although cannot be seen as completely correct. The basis of society lies not within the strength of the individual but the outcome of all individual actions. This aggregate effect will benefit all, let it be to a certain extent. It is not always in a man’s best interest to pursue the clearly most beneficiary goal. Men will act in the benefit of their own interest and I think that men’s nature is indeed preservation of the individual but also of the species. Therefore men will not always turn to violence but will also seek the more diplomatic ways to achieve goals. As is shown by the many mediaeval battles, the sum of the total is an aggravation of everyone’s benefits. Then why do wars exist? The answer to this question is not an easy one to answer while trying to dispute Hobbes so I won’t. Hobbes, as I already claimed is right, to a certain extent. Real power lies not within the hands of individuals but in the hands of corporate actors, which are formed by mostly male individuals. This, I see as the main reason for battle-like behaviour. Off all men would be able to think reasonable and not in terms of power and the like then the situations of war would probably not exist. However, in the group process this is clearly not the case. To give a current day example of this one could survey the campus. In such an environment the atmosphere should be positive, as everybody will agree upon. Now then, why is the group process the other way around. Why do people within a closed group complain more frequently than others do? The reason, I think is that group behaviour is irrational and will lead to non-logical outcomes. The control mechanisms underlying society do not function properly in a group whereas people involved, and not controlled in their direct decisions by objective people, influence everybody within that group.Irrational behaviour is of course existent otherwise earth would be heaven and not purgatory. It is nevertheless to argue whether such irrational behaviour is held up by everybody or just by individuals controlled by others the rational. In the case of the nightwatch-man this is also described since this pictures a situation in which action must be taken by the powerful and rational against the powerful irrational not any longer under control by the rational group in which they normally crawl. There exists a just and an unjust where I would the describe them as in the interest of many and respectively of some.


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