The general will
1513 Niccolò Machiavelli’s The Prince offers a modern form of politics in which a ruler’s morality and the concerns of state are strictly separate.
1651 Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan argues for the foundation of the state on the basis of the social contract.
1789 The Jacobin Club begins meeting in Paris. Its extremist members attempt to apply Rousseau’s principles to revolutionary politics.
1791 In Britain, Edmund Burke blames Rousseau for the “excesses” of the French Revolution.
For centuries in Western Europe, a certain style of thinking about human affairs prevailed. Under the sway of ...