Thomas Hobbes and His Theory of Social Contract

Human beings live in a world that is full of rules, regulations and most of the time they don’t have chance to refuse or change them. The majority of the world population lives in territories where there are official, organized institutions called “states”. human beings lived freely in nature without a central, binding power long period of time in history. Thomas Hobes who tried explain necessity of the state explain the transition from this stateless stage called “the state of nature” to an organized state.

Also, Hobbes’ theory can be considered as very pessimistic and dark. According to him, the state of nature does not refer to a peaceful, harmonious social life. Firstly, he believes that all individuals struggled against all other individuals. He claims that human beings are naturally selfish and he considers human beings as rational egoists that always look for the maximization of their self-profits. Secondly, Hobes thinks that humans are somehow naturally equal and there is not too much difference between their mental and physical abilities.

So, in a stateless stage individuals have the motive to compete with others in a very hostile sense. Hobbes explain it as the lack of confidence people have in the state of war due to their inevitably unsafe lives which called “diffidence”. Lastly ,the desire to have glory is the last motive that Orient people in state of war. People always want to have reputation and power. However they actually want to have prevent potentional threats by frightening or threating other people in this unsafe World.

Thus according to him there was a need for a special person like a mortal God called “Leviathan” who would provide peace and order in society. After analyzing Hobbes’ theory we can m explain and criticize Hobbes’ argument. First of all, according to Thomas Hobbes, a contract is simply “the mutual transferring of right”( Hobbes, p. 192). ). In Hobbes’ view, a contract must be mutual. He later axplains expresse contracts are “words spoken with understanding of what they signifie” such as “I give, I grant etc” (Hobbes, p. 193).

However, inferred social contracts can be made by many different ways . According to Hobbes it is more convenient for the inferred type of social contract rather than express social contract. . Thus, we can clearly say that Hobbesian social contract is an inferred one but not an express one. Hobbes thinks that people should always fulfill their duties to the social contract. Also he admits that people may start to question why they have to continue with this covenant which they did not approve. According to him these questions are unnecessary.

Preventing destructive civil and foreign wars which may lead to the collapse of the state is the main problem in there. As a result, An express social contract would not work in Hobbes’ theory since people are egoist and they may not be content of Leviathan’s decisions. Thus, Hobbes’ ideal state is an absolute monarchy Finally , Hobbes’ approach to the topic is very pessimistic and based on the false idea that people are selfish and cruel creatures and it is not in conformity with the dynamism of modern societies.