The Theories of Thomas Paine and John Locke Comparison Essay by RightRiters

The Theories of Thomas Paine and John Locke
This paper discusses the difference between the firebrand ideas of Thomas Paine and those of Locke as evidenced by comparing the nature of the Glorious Revolution with that of the French Revolution.
# 23606 | 2,181 words | 6 sources | MLA | 2002 | US

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The writer sites Paine's philosophy as a pragmatic one that would resonate more with the ideas commonly held today than would Locke's; today's political rhetoric proves most resonant when it refers to the specifics of budgets and financing. The Lockean world is dependent upon the existence of a frontier, for this enables any man to gain parity with all other men that are able to subsist of their own devises, given that he has merit and the ability to hunt or till the soil Paine's ideas.

From the Paper:

"Monticello, the mansion that Thomas Jefferson designed in the hills of Virginia near the State University that he founded, has three portraits that are to be found on the wall of President Jefferson's study that have remained there for 200 years. These portraits are of three writers Francis Bacon, Isaac Newton and John Locke. Jefferson, who wrote the Declaration of Independence and acquired the Louisiana Purchase form the French, refers to these three as "the greatest men who ever lived." Today's American Republic, however, seldom reflects the sentiments of John Locke aside from the occasional pamphlet of Libertarian rhetoric or op-ed written by the Cato Institute. Political theorists are more apt to cite Galbraith, education experts to mention Dewey, and philosophers to quote Rawls. Modern theorists would be quick to group classical liberalism, which is now almost explicitly considered the domain of libertarian thinkers. This would be a mistake, as it fails to acknowledge the divergence of American though from the Lockian views that underscored the Scottish Enlightenment."

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