StudentShare
Contact Us
Sign In / Sign Up for FREE
Search
Go to advanced search...

Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence - Essay Example

Comments (1) Cite this document
Summary
One of the most fundamental aspects of Rousseau’s understanding of political thought and theory relates to the fact that he believed in the existence of what he termed a “social contract” between “the people”. …
Download full paper File format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER93.5% of users find it useful
Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence
Read Text Preview

Extract of sample "Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence"

Download file to see previous pages Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence

One of the ways that this can most distinctly be seen is within the founding document of the American movement of independence, the Declaration of Independence. Although many individuals doubtless influenced upon the way in which Thomas Jefferson ultimately authored the Declaration of Independence, Jean Jacques Rousseau is and was one of the most important and prominent influential factors in the way that this particular document was understood and ultimately represented. Accordingly, I will seek to draw a very clear line of distinction between some of the primary and fundamental aspects of the writings of Jean Jacques Rousseau within the document of the Declaration of Independence. However, before delving too deeply into comparisons and contrasts of the works of Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence, a further level of analysis with regards to the Declaration of Independence’s most prominent author, Thomas Jefferson, must be engaged with. Thomas Jefferson is known by many historians to be one of the most prominent and influential founding fathers of the United States. However, he was also a very prominent philosopher, inventor, writer, and Francophile. Accordingly, it comes as little surprise that Thomas Jefferson would have leaned heavily upon the writings and understandings exhibited by Jean Jacques Rousseau as a means of crafting this fundamental explanation of how and why the United States determined to free itself from English colonial bonds. (Declaration of Independence 1). One of the most fundamental aspects of Rousseau’s understanding of political thought and theory relates to the fact that he believed in the existence of what he termed a “social contract” between “the people”. Rousseau was fundamentally opposed to the idea that the divine right of kings allowed for an efficient and/or equitable means of governance. This can, of course, be traced back to what many have termed Enlightenment thinking. He, like many enlightenment thinkers questioned whether or not the divine right of kings was sufficient evidence to compel the people into servitude. Further, his works reference the understanding that a rule by the masses would represent a far more equitable approach (Storey 748). Ultimately, this was the same belief system that not only precipitated the American Revolution but also the French Revolution shortly thereafter. Many scholars have referred to this idea as early republicanism; i.e. the belief that the people under the form of an elected government were ultimately much better able to determine their own future then the distant, and ultimately uncaring monarchy that existed at that time. Although it may be convenient to assume that Rousseau was the first political thinker to come up with such a theory, this can be traced as far back as the ancient Greeks in the form of Plato, Aristotle, and Socrates. The existence and definition of this level of freedom which each and every man should exhibit was defined by Rousseau as something gifted by nature and/or of the natural order (Feinstein 14). At this juncture, the reader can aptly note the idea of self-determination, as exhibited within the Declaration of Independence, was a natural right and not something that was merely created by definition. Thomas Jefferson, and other framers of the Declaration of ...Download file to see next pages Read More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
  • CHICAGO
(“Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence Essay”, n.d.)
Retrieved from https://studentshare.org/law/1473524-jean-jacques-rousseau-and-the-declaration-of-independence
(Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence Essay)
https://studentshare.org/law/1473524-jean-jacques-rousseau-and-the-declaration-of-independence.
“Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence Essay”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/law/1473524-jean-jacques-rousseau-and-the-declaration-of-independence.
  • Cited: 1 times
Comments (1)
Click to create a comment or rate a document
fr
fritschalva added comment 1 year ago
Student rated this paper as
I didn’t know how to start my essay. "Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence" helped me out a lot! Especially the list of structure was valuable.

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence

The French Revolution: The Profession of Faith by Rousseau

...Part The Profession of Faith is Rousseau’s attempt at analyzing God and Religion. This passage is part of the Priest’s (the narrator) introspection of what his duties are as a human being. The passage under discussion is the Priest’s attempt to learn what mode of conduct God prescribes him. To decipher the “rules I ought to prescribe myself in order to fulfil my destiny on earth according to the intention of Him who put me there”. Consistent with the rest of the text, Rousseau emphasizes the significance of honest sentiment and its interpretation to draw out theological truths. The Priest explores four stages of theological enquiry. The first stage talks about our sense organs and their function. The next stage discusses God and his...
6 Pages (1500 words) Assignment

To What Extent Did the Constitutional Treaty Meet the Objectives Set for It by the Laeken Declaration

Peter Hain, Secretary of State for Wales speaking at Westminster Hall on the Convention on the Future of Europe noted that ‘the protocols envisage a formal role for national parliaments.

A treaty establishing a constitution for Europe was signed on 29 October 2004 in Rome and is required to be ratified by all Member States by November 1, 2006.3 Articles 1-2 of the Constitutional Treaty are consistent with the main goals expressed by the Laeken Declaration. The opening Articles declare that the European Union is founded upon mutual respect for basic human dignity, democracy, equality, human rights and the rule of law in general. The Articles go on to maintain that these goals and values are the mutual concern of al...
12 Pages (3000 words) Term Paper

Jean Gebser - The Ever-Present Origin

...Jean Gebser - The Ever-Present Origin Biography of Jean Gebser Jean Gebser was born in the year 1905 in Posen, Germany and is most famous for his works in the field of human consciousness. He was a poet and a linguist as well. He left his native land in the year 1929 so that he could resist the urge to fight with the fascists. He moved on towards Italy and then later on in France. After this, he shifted to Spain and tried his hand at learning the Spanish language after which he was inducted into the Spanish Civil Service. He became a Senior Officer in the Spanish Ministry of Education. The Spanish Civil War resulted in his leaving the country in the year 1936 and his next destination was that of Paris, France. Since the debate was rampant...
6 Pages (1500 words) Article

The Declaration of Independence in America

...1. Did the constitution regulate the status of blacks, free or slave, in America? The Declaration of Independence that read, “we hold this truth to be self evident, that all men are created equal” was incompatible with the institution of slavery. The constitution did regulate the status of men, but not “black men” per se. The concept of slavery was discussed in the constitution but only vaguely and with ambiguity, whereas there was nothing in the constitution that regulated the status of blacks in general. The slave-trade clause in the Constitution, inserted to enable states to be able to “import” slaves by paying a duty was one clause, which caused slaves to be looked on as property. Whereas, on the other hand, the fugitive-slave...
9 Pages (2250 words) Assignment

Auditor Independence

...Auditor independence Table of Contents Introduction 3 2) Definition of Independent Auditing 3 3) Perception of Auditor Independence before 2001 3.1) General Perception 3 3.2) Famous Accounting Scandals before...
7 Pages (1750 words) Case Study

Imperial Power and the Post-Colony: A Changing Relationship After Independence

...Imperial Power and the Post-Colony: A Changing Relationship After Independence? The age of imperialism saw a handful of European powers – ly Great Britain, France, Spain, The Netherlands, and Belgium – armed with sophisticated and powerful navies extend their dominion across (most of) the rest of the world. International history took on a new course as the colonial era saw the imposition of European rule over territories as distinct as South Africa and erstwhile Siam (Thailand) to countries as geographically distant as Mexico and India. The process of decolonization, occurring in waves since the 1940s, seminally changed the nature of international politics, with a proliferation of free and sovereign nations emerging throughout the world...
8 Pages (2000 words) Coursework

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

...Hello, I have read this and thinks it’s perfect I have slight amendments which are highlighted in red. thanks Universal Declaration of Human Rights Introduction Human rights are defined as, the basic standards by which we can identify and measure inequality and fairness. These rights are specified in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.1 The United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) on the 10th of December 1948. It consists of a number of civil, cultural, economic, political, and social rights. Although, it is not legally binding, it provides an authoritative interpretation of several articles of the UN Charter; and the latter is binding on the member states of the United Nations.2 There are several...
8 Pages (2000 words) Case Study

Analysis of Theory of Jean Watson

...Running Head: Analysis of Theory of Jean Watson Analysis of Theory of Jean Watson [Institute’s Analysis of Theory of Jean Watson The paper deals with the detailed analysis of theory of human caring presented by Jean Watson, a famous nursing professional. The theory is one of the most significant and important theories ever developed in nursing studies. The paper presents the theory analysis that is its systematic examination for meaning, logical adequacy, usefulness, generality, parsimony, and testability. The reason behind choosing this particular theory is the fact that this theory makes use of both science and art in its understanding and implementation. This theory does not relate its concept to the physical healing but it also put...
8 Pages (2000 words) Coursework

The Declaration of Independence - Its Origins and Effects

...The Declaration of Independence, it’s Origins and Effects The story of the Declaration of Independence is a familiar one not just to Americans. The document is known worldwide. Written by Thomas Jefferson as directed by John Adams and edited somewhat by Benjamin Franklin the document declared the former colonies were now a sovereign country. The ideology behind the Declaration was shaped by, among others, John Locke, a British philosopher whose ideas if liberty and freedom were widely known and accepted by the Founding Fathers most notably Jefferson. It was largely Locke that inspired America’s founding document. In practice, however, his and the Founders vision has not been realized. The level of personal autonomy established...
6 Pages (1500 words) Literature review

Auditor Independence and Scepticism

...Auditor Independence and Scepticism Table of Contents Table of Contents 2 Introduction 3 Nature of Auditor Independence and Auditor Scepticism 3 The Nature of the Auditor Independence 3 Nature of Auditor Scepticism 4 The Development of Auditor Independence and Scepticism 5 5 Criticism of Auditor Independence and Scepticism 7 Criticism of Auditor Independence 7 Criticism of Auditing Scepticism 8 Conclusions and Recommendations 9 References 11 Bibliography 12 Introduction Auditor refers to a professional who is liable to ensure the accuracy of accounting statements of a company. Specifically, the responsibilities of an auditor involve the full participation of the professional to identify the indication of inefficiency...
8 Pages (2000 words) Research Paper
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Essay on topic Jean Jacques Rousseau and the Declaration of Independence for FREE!

Contact Us