Hobbes and Spinoza: Absolutism and Human Sociableness

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    The main difference between Hobbes and Spinoza in spite of obvious similarities concerns absolutism. Hobbes believed in absolutism of some sort for man must realise that only some sovereign power could make and enforce laws that make social life possible. Spinoza had no need for the fictitious social pact of submission and argued for the sociableness of man as a natural emotion with a rational basis. Both departed from the self love theory and both claimed their –opposite- results to follow from their axioms and definitions more geometrico; Hobbes that man’s fellow man must be his enemy, and Spinoza that man’s fellow man is the most useful for him.
    Translated title of the contributionHobbes og Spinoza: Absolutisme og menneskelig socialitet
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationThe Narrative of Modernity: Co-existence of Diferences : ISSEI International Society for the Study of European Ideas ISSEI 9th Conference (Pamplona, 2 - 7 August, 2004)
    EditorsEnrico Banus
    Number of pages7
    Place of PublicationPamplona, Spain
    PublisherCentro de Estudios Europeos, University of Navarra
    Publication date2006
    Publication statusPublished - 2006

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