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Philosophy 2500F/G Study Guide - Final Guide: Collective Identity

Course Code
PHIL 2500F/G
Study Guide

of 2
Path of association allegiance puts ourselves and strength in common under supreme
direction of individual will
General will is a collective association given to a sovereign above the law because he can’t
contract with himself
An individual is indivisible because you can’t punish yourself for breaking your contract
State is an entity best understood whence doing nothing its power it to only affect others
Private will is that which interest benefits you alone can’t be understood as identical to
general will
Power of the state operates through forceful imposition of rules of government
Legitimacy of power: claim that we all by nature are free and equal emphasis on freedom
Can’t be born into slavery – contrary to nature no sense of might or right only that power is
attained through strength
When you argue to do something you’re dominated over, has to be a general will consensus
Submit to an authority outside ourselves is not something you naturally need to do
Sufficiency rule: you can acquire only that which you need to survive
Mistake in thinking that parts of government act together, everything is subordinate to the
sovereign general will can authorize or delineate parts of government but still subordinate
No acts under general will can be unlawful because it expresses itself in a lawful universal way
Interested in maximizing or reconciling individual freedom with the authority of the sate
Sovereign can only act when it is in the protection of the general will, laws must benefit
Need to pool our strength in order to protect against the state of nature and its inconveniences
Partial associations tolerated so long as associations and inequalities between them don’t
create factions
Need to prevent power relations where it’s at expense of general will leads to a SOA
The Republic: state rules b law completely representative of general will/ SON is unfree
Submission to the state creates a level of consent to measure civil freedoms
Collective identity required for state and it’s people to be virtuous
Thinks we’re better off what without one/uncorrupted in our natural state
Something motivated us to band together in SON government to express our general will
We have the right to self preservation and right to rebel if sovereign isn’t protecting me
Free riders: consent of majority makes it rational for a few to deviate to take advantage
Answers to the problem:
1. Coercive power only rational to be part of that society
2. Natural tendencies: make this an unlikely dilemma needed to prevent unnatural behaviour
3. Constructed character: sign onto a contract, second it doesn’t match your self interest, you
Rational thought is public and flourishes through education to create better cohesion
Difference of engaged arguments
Theories are designed to be so complicated only the smartest can decode it theories are
wrong all they stand to do is deceive