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Social Contract

Social Contract

The Social Contract was written by Rousseau in 1762 in response to the political theory that citizens enter into an unwritten contract with each other to lift each other out of their primitive state and establish government for the general will and good of the people. Social Contract research papers disclose that Rousseau argued that only when citizens engage in what is the "common good" will there be hope for the good of the public to be carried out in government. To achieve this, Rousseau calls upon "substituting a partial and moral existence for the physical and independent existence nature has conferred on us all". Therefore, man is forced to act for the moral and social good of the collective self in order to maintain society.

In Rousseau's "The Social Contract," he introduced the idea of human rights, which were mainly rights individuals recognized among one another when they entered into a contract which would determine the government of the members joining in the contract. Rousseau presented a picture of self-government, which was markedly different from the authoritarian monarchies of most European governments which were legitimized by "divine right" or some similar concept. Rousseau called upon direct democratic participation as the only way to insure the public's interest is maintained in government. By amassing an exalted community, the public feels at one with ideals and freedoms.

In Rousseau's original society, man exists in isolation as an animal. He hunts to find food and clothes to keep himself alive. He sleeps in the open, or in trees and other naturally created homes. If he meets a female of the species, his natural instinct will take over, and the species will be maintained. However, he will not stay with that woman, since he has no instinct for that. In this environment, Rousseau claims, all men are equally free and that people will do better than others by utilizing their abilities, yet they will not be in competition.

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Social Contract Research Papers

Rousseau's Social Contract research papers disclose that Rousseau argued that only when citizens engage in what is the 'common good' will there be hope for the good of the public to be carried out in government.

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