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Needed but Unwanted. Thomas Hobbes’s Warnings on the Dangers of Multitude, Populism and Democracy

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1. Title Title of document Needed but Unwanted. Thomas Hobbes’s Warnings on the Dangers of Multitude, Populism and Democracy
2. Creator Author's name, affiliation, country Mikko Jakonen; University of Jyväskylä; Finland
3. Subject Discipline(s) political philosophy, political theory
3. Subject Keyword(s) Thomas Hobbes, democracy, social contract, populism, multitude
3. Subject Subject classification 7207.04
4. Description Abstract

The purpose of this article is to analyse Hobbes’s understanding of democracy. The first part of the article analyses the role of democracy in the social contract. It aims to show how there exists a democratic element at the beginning of the process of social contract, in which the multitude is transformed into a people. However, after the first social contract is made, Hobbes aims to reduce the power of the people by leading the process of social contract on to another level, on which the power of the people is assigned to a representative of the sovereign power, for example a monarch. The second part of the article aims to explain the practical reasons, provided by Hobbes in different parts of his political theory, for his aversion to a democratic form of government. Main reason for this, it is argued, is that democratic government is closest to the unwanted multitude. Thus, in his political theory Hobbes uses democracy to build sovereign power, but does not trust it as a form of government.

5. Publisher Organizing agency, location Universidad Complutense de Madrid
6. Contributor Sponsor(s) Department of Social Sciences and Philosophy at the University of Jyväskylä
7. Date (YYYY-MM-DD) 2016-12-20
8. Type Status & genre Peer-reviewed Article
8. Type Type
9. Format File format PDF, HTML
10. Identifier Uniform Resource Identifier
11. Source Title; vol., no. (year) Las Torres de Lucca. International Journal of Political Philosophy; Vol 5, No 9 (2016): July-December
12. Language English=en en
13. Relation Supp. Files
14. Coverage Geo-spatial location, chronological period, research sample (gender, age, etc.)
15. Rights Copyright and permissions Copyright (c) 2016 Mikko Jakonen
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