Hobbes and Rousseau

I’ve been spending the past couple of days writing up the sections on Hobbes and Rousseau from the fairly extensive notes I’d taken. With Hobbes the focus is on his critique of the temporal/spiritual power division; his engagement with Robert Bellarmine, especially as this relates to areas of control and jurisdiction; and the various aspects of the frontispiece. Click on the image for a bigger picture/higher resolution.


Blown up you can see details that escape you if you just look at the reproductions in modern editions: among many things note the writing on the implements in the box one from bottom in the right column: the trident to the left has the word Syl-logis-me split between the prongs; and then the three two-pointed implements have ‘spiritual’ and ‘temporal’; ‘directe’ and ‘indirecte’; and ‘real’ and ‘intentional’. At the bottom of this panel there are the two horns of a di-lem-ma. Loads of things to say about this – although it has obviously been extensively discussed before.

There are still a few bits of the Hobbes section that need work, notably the discussion of his relation to geometry, and in particular to Descartes. But I need to work through Descartes more fully before I can return to that. I then need to see how I link the Hobbes discussion into that of Filmer and Locke.

With Rousseau, it’s more straight-forward since he falls outside the temporal scope of the book (at the moment, I end with Leibniz). Rousseau rather serves as a frame for the book as a whole, so I’ve written what might be the draft of parts of the introduction and conclusion. The difference between Hobbes and Rousseau, for this project, is that while both of them are operating within what I’d call the modern sense of territory and its relation to the state and sovereignty, Rousseau knows it, and has the words and concepts to prove it. Hobbes is, conceptually, still a bit all over the place. Rousseau is pretty clear.

This entry was posted in Gottfried Leibniz, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Territory, The Birth of Territory, Thomas Hobbes. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Hobbes and Rousseau

  1. Pingback: Chapter Nine | Progressive Geographies

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