The Real "State of Nature": Identifying what "Human Nature" (absent laws and society) actually is.

Submitted by PerfectSociety in Anarchy101

One of the core questions in political philosophy has always been that of "Human Nature". One's view of Human Nature plays a pivotal role in determining one's political philosophy and ideology. Thomas Hobbes viewed Human Nature (absent laws and society) as that of violence and domineering brutishness, which plays a central role in his defense of the State. In contrast, Rousseau viewed Human Nature as peaceful, docile, carefree, and egalitarian.

Contrary to what most people may think, social scientific evidence overwhelmingly favors Rousseau's view of Human Nature over that of Hobbes:

How does your conception of "Human Nature" influence your political philosophy and ideology? Do you agree or disagree with what I've written?


You must log in or register to comment.


selver wrote (edited )

I don't believe it matters one way or the other. If humans are good & social, then obviously anarchism works. If humans are bad & anti-social, then it makes no sense to give individual humans power over each other, since they will obviously abuse it. Moreover, if some element of human nature makes anarchism more difficult, then the solution is to change human nature, which is obviously possible given the existence of great people.

Personally I tend to think most people are terrible. But people being a result of historical accident, that can be changed.