John Locke on the Role of Government Analytical Essay by Master Researcher
John Locke on the Role of Government
This paper discusses John Locke's view of the function of government.
# 33909 | 1,150 words | 1 source | MLA | 2002 |
Published on Nov 09, 2003 in Political Science (Political Theory) , Political Science (John Locke)
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This paper discusses how Locke believed that society needed government, but only for the sake of protecting rights and guaranteeing civil liberties rather than giving orders. The paper explains how he denounced the theory of the divine right of kings and he acknowledged how the government was supreme, but only in the sense that it was bound by civil and natural law. Furthermore, the paper explains Locke's view that if the government had violated its contractual obligation to protect the right of the governed, then the citizens of the society had a right to rebel.
From the Paper:"In the Second Treatise of Government, John Locke espoused his views on why society needed government. For Locke, freedom represented the absence of constraint. Consequently, Locke emphasized the importance of individual freedom. This belief was directly related to this philosopher's view of an ideal civil government and a good society. Locke's individualism allowed political and social freedom for society, yet it necessitated the importance of government to bestow and guarantee those rights. Thus, Locke believed that society needed government, but only for the sake of protecting rights, rather than giving orders.
"The 17th century English philosopher denounced the theory of the divine right of kings because he believed in "popular sovereignty", which basically meant that sovereignty resided with the citizens of a state. In other words, for Locke, the government was only in existence to protect peoples' sovereignty. The state, he believed, was supreme, but only in the sense that it was bound by civil, and what he termed "natural" law."
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