John Locke

John Locke FRS (/lɒk/; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704) was an English philosopher and physician, widely regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers and commonly known as the "Father of Liberalism".[9][10][11] Considered one of the first of the British empiricists, following the tradition of Sir Francis Bacon, he is equally important to social contract theory. His work greatly affected the development of epistemology and political philosophy. His writings influenced Voltaire and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, many Scottish Enlightenment thinkers, as well as the American revolutionaries. His contributions to classical republicanism and liberal theory are reflected in the United States Declaration of Independence.[12]

Locke's theory of mind is often cited as the origin of modern conceptions of identity and the self, figuring prominently in the work of later philosophers such as David Hume, Rousseau, and Immanuel Kant. Locke was the first to define the self through a continuity of consciousness. He postulated that, at birth, the mind was a blank slate or tabula rasa. Contrary to Cartesian philosophy based on pre-existing concepts, he maintained that we are born without innate ideas, and that knowledge is instead determined only by experience derived from sense perception.[13] This is now known as empiricism. An example of Locke's belief in empiricism can be seen in his quote, "whatever I write, as soon as I discover it not to be true, my hand shall be the forwardest to throw it into the fire." This shows the ideology of science in his observations in that something must be capable of being tested repeatedly and that nothing is exempt from being disproven. Challenging the work of others, Locke is said to have established the method of introspection, or observing the emotions and behaviours of one's self.[14]

John Locke

John Locke
Portrait of Locke in 1697 by Godfrey Kneller
Born29 August 1632
Wrington, Somerset, England
Died28 October 1704 (aged 72)
High Laver, Essex, England
NationalityEnglish
EducationChrist Church, Oxford
Era17th-century philosophy
(Early modern philosophy)
RegionWestern philosophy
School
Main interests
Metaphysics, epistemology, political philosophy, philosophy of mind, philosophy of education, economics
Notable ideas
Signature
John Locke Signature
John Locke's Kit-cat portrait by Godfrey Kneller, National Portrait Gallery, London
John Locke's kit-cat portrait by Godfrey Kneller, National Portrait Gallery, London

Life and work

Locke's father, also called John, was an attorney who served as clerk to the Justices of the Peace in Chew Magna;[15] he had served as a captain of cavalry for the Parliamentarian forces during the early part of the English Civil War. His mother was Agnes Keene. Both parents were Puritans. Locke was born on 29 August 1632, in a small thatched cottage by the church in Wrington, Somerset, about 12 miles from Bristol. He was baptised the same day. Soon after Locke's birth, the family moved to the market town of Pensford, about seven miles south of Bristol, where Locke grew up in a rural Tudor house in Belluton.

In 1647, Locke was sent to the prestigious Westminster School in London under the sponsorship of Alexander Popham, a member of Parliament and his father's former commander. After completing studies there, he was admitted to Christ Church, Oxford, in the autumn of 1652 at the age of twenty. The dean of the college at the time was John Owen, vice-chancellor of the university. Although a capable student, Locke was irritated by the undergraduate curriculum of the time. He found the works of modern philosophers, such as René Descartes, more interesting than the classical material taught at the university. Through his friend Richard Lower, whom he knew from the Westminster School, Locke was introduced to medicine and the experimental philosophy being pursued at other universities and in the Royal Society, of which he eventually became a member.

Locke was awarded a bachelor's degree in February 1656 and a master's degree in June 1658.[16] He obtained a bachelor of medicine in February 1675,[17] having studied medicine extensively during his time at Oxford and worked with such noted scientists and thinkers as Robert Boyle, Thomas Willis, Robert Hooke and Richard Lower. In 1666, he met Lord Anthony Ashley Cooper, 1st Earl of Shaftesbury, who had come to Oxford seeking treatment for a liver infection. Cooper was impressed with Locke and persuaded him to become part of his retinue.

Locke had been looking for a career and in 1667 moved into Shaftesbury's home at Exeter House in London, to serve as Lord Ashley's personal physician. In London, Locke resumed his medical studies under the tutelage of Thomas Sydenham. Sydenham had a major effect on Locke's natural philosophical thinking – an effect that would become evident in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding.

Locke's medical knowledge was put to the test when Shaftesbury's liver infection became life-threatening. Locke coordinated the advice of several physicians and was probably instrumental in persuading Shaftesbury to undergo surgery (then life-threatening itself) to remove the cyst. Shaftesbury survived and prospered, crediting Locke with saving his life.

During this time, Locke served as Secretary of the Board of Trade and Plantations and Secretary to the Lords Proprietor of Carolina, which helped to shape his ideas on international trade and economics.

Shaftesbury, as a founder of the Whig movement, exerted great influence on Locke's political ideas. Locke became involved in politics when Shaftesbury became Lord Chancellor in 1672. Following Shaftesbury's fall from favour in 1675, Locke spent some time travelling across France as tutor and medical attendant to Caleb Banks.[18] He returned to England in 1679 when Shaftesbury's political fortunes took a brief positive turn. Around this time, most likely at Shaftesbury's prompting, Locke composed the bulk of the Two Treatises of Government. While it was once thought that Locke wrote the Treatises to defend the Glorious Revolution of 1688, recent scholarship has shown that the work was composed well before this date.[19] The work is now viewed as a more general argument against absolute monarchy (particularly as espoused by Robert Filmer and Thomas Hobbes) and for individual consent as the basis of political legitimacy. Although Locke was associated with the influential Whigs, his ideas about natural rights and government are today considered quite revolutionary for that period in English history.

Locke fled to the Netherlands in 1683, under strong suspicion of involvement in the Rye House Plot, although there is little evidence to suggest that he was directly involved in the scheme. The philosopher and novelist Rebecca Newberger Goldstein argues that during his five years in Holland, Locke chose his friends "from among the same freethinking members of dissenting Protestant groups as Spinoza's small group of loyal confidants. [Baruch Spinoza had died in 1677.] Locke almost certainly met men in Amsterdam who spoke of the ideas of that renegade Jew who... insisted on identifying himself through his religion of reason alone." While she says that "Locke's strong empiricist tendencies" would have "disinclined him to read a grandly metaphysical work such as Spinoza's Ethics, in other ways he was deeply receptive to Spinoza's ideas, most particularly to the rationalist's well thought out argument for political and religious tolerance and the necessity of the separation of church and state."[20]

In the Netherlands, Locke had time to return to his writing, spending a great deal of time re-working the Essay and composing the Letter on Toleration. Locke did not return home until after the Glorious Revolution. Locke accompanied Mary II back to England in 1688. The bulk of Locke's publishing took place upon his return from exile – his aforementioned Essay Concerning Human Understanding, the Two Treatises of Civil Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration all appearing in quick succession.

Locke's close friend Lady Masham invited him to join her at Otes, the Mashams' country house in Essex. Although his time there was marked by variable health from asthma attacks, he nevertheless became an intellectual hero of the Whigs. During this period he discussed matters with such figures as John Dryden and Isaac Newton.

He died on 28 October 1704, and is buried in the churchyard of the village of High Laver,[21] east of Harlow in Essex, where he had lived in the household of Sir Francis Masham since 1691. Locke never married nor had children.

Events that happened during Locke's lifetime include the English Restoration, the Great Plague of London and the Great Fire of London. He did not quite see the Act of Union of 1707, though the thrones of England and Scotland were held in personal union throughout his lifetime. Constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy were in their infancy during Locke's time.

Ideas

In the late 17th and early 18th centuries, Locke's Two Treatises were rarely cited. Historian Julian Hoppit said of the book, "except among some Whigs, even as a contribution to the intense debate of the 1690s it made little impression and was generally ignored until 1703 (though in Oxford in 1695 it was reported to have made 'a great noise')".[22] John Kenyon, in his study of British political debate from 1689 to 1720, has remarked that Locke's theories were "mentioned so rarely in the early stages of the [Glorious] Revolution, up to 1692, and even less thereafter, unless it was to heap abuse on them" and that "no one, including most Whigs, [were] ready for the idea of a notional or abstract contract of the kind adumbrated by Locke".[23] In contrast, Kenyon adds that Algernon Sidney's Discourses Concerning Government were "certainly much more influential than Locke's Two Treatises".[24]

Locke-John-LOC
John Locke

In the 50 years after Queen Anne's death in 1714, the Two Treatises were reprinted only once (except in the collected works of Locke). However, with the rise of American resistance to British taxation, the Second Treatise gained a new readership; it was frequently cited in the debates in both America and Britain. The first American printing occurred in 1773 in Boston.[25]

Locke exercised a profound influence on political philosophy, in particular on modern liberalism. Michael Zuckert has argued that Locke launched liberalism by tempering Hobbesian absolutism and clearly separating the realms of Church and State. He had a strong influence on Voltaire who called him "le sage Locke". His arguments concerning liberty and the social contract later influenced the written works of Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, and other Founding Fathers of the United States. In fact, one passage from the Second Treatise is reproduced verbatim in the Declaration of Independence, the reference to a "long train of abuses". Such was Locke's influence that Thomas Jefferson wrote: "Bacon, Locke and Newton... I consider them as the three greatest men that have ever lived, without any exception, and as having laid the foundation of those superstructures which have been raised in the Physical and Moral sciences".[26][27][28]

But Locke's influence may have been even more profound in the realm of epistemology. Locke redefined subjectivity, or self, and intellectual historians such as Charles Taylor and Jerrold Seigel argue that Locke's An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690) marks the beginning of the modern Western conception of the self.[29][30]

Locke's theory of association heavily influenced the subject matter of modern psychology. At the time, the empiricist philosopher's recognition of two types of ideas, simple and complex ideas, more importantly their interaction through associationism inspired other philosophers, such as David Hume and George Berkeley, to revise and expand this theory and apply it to explain how humans gain knowledge in the physical world.[31]

Theories of religious tolerance

John Locke by Richard Westmacott
John Locke by Richard Westmacott, University College, London

Locke, writing his Letters Concerning Toleration (1689–1692) in the aftermath of the European wars of religion, formulated a classic reasoning for religious tolerance. Three arguments are central: (1) Earthly judges, the state in particular, and human beings generally, cannot dependably evaluate the truth-claims of competing religious standpoints; (2) Even if they could, enforcing a single "true religion" would not have the desired effect, because belief cannot be compelled by violence; (3) Coercing religious uniformity would lead to more social disorder than allowing diversity.[32]

With regard to his position on religious tolerance, Locke was influenced by Baptist theologians like John Smyth and Thomas Helwys, who had published tracts demanding freedom of conscience in the early 17th century.[33][34][35] Baptist theologian Roger Williams founded the colony Rhode Island in 1636, where he combined a democratic constitution with unlimited religious freedom. His tract The Bloody Tenent of Persecution for Cause of Conscience (1644), which was widely read in the mother country, was a passionate plea for absolute religious freedom and the total separation of church and state.[36] Freedom of conscience had had high priority on the theological, philosophical and political agenda, since Martin Luther refused to recant his beliefs before the Diet of the Holy Roman Empire at Worms in 1521, unless he would be proved false by the Bible.[37]

Constitution of Carolina

Appraisals of Locke have often been tied to appraisals of liberalism in general, and to appraisals of the United States. Detractors note that (in 1671) he was a major investor in the English slave-trade through the Royal African Company. In addition, he participated in drafting the Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina while Shaftesbury's secretary, which established a feudal aristocracy and gave a master absolute power over his slaves. For example, Martin Cohen notes that Locke, as a secretary to the Council of Trade and Plantations (1673–1674) and a member of the Board of Trade (1696–1700), was in fact, "one of just half a dozen men who created and supervised both the colonies and their iniquitous systems of servitude".[38] Some see his statements on unenclosed property as having been intended to justify the displacement of the Native Americans.[39][40] Because of his opposition to aristocracy and slavery in his major writings, he is accused of hypocrisy and racism, or of caring only for the liberty of English capitalists.[41] Locke also drafted implementing instructions for the Carolina colonists designed to ensure that settlement and development was consistent with the Fundamental Constitutions. Collectively, these documents are known as the Grand Model for the Province of Carolina.

Theory of value and property

Locke uses the word property in both broad and narrow senses. In a broad sense, it covers a wide range of human interests and aspirations; more narrowly, it refers to material goods. He argues that property is a natural right and it is derived from labour. In Chapter V of his Second Treatise, Locke argues that the individual ownership of goods and property is justified by the labour exerted to produce those goods or utilise property to produce goods beneficial to human society.[42]

Locke stated his belief, in his Second Treatise, that nature on its own provides little of value to society, implying that the labour expended in the creation of goods gives them their value. This position can be seen as a labour theory of value.[42] From this premise, Locke developed a labour theory of property, namely that ownership of property is created by the application of labour. In addition, he believed that property precedes government and government cannot "dispose of the estates of the subjects arbitrarily." Karl Marx later critiqued Locke's theory of property in his own social theory.

Political theory

Locke's political theory was founded on social contract theory. Unlike Thomas Hobbes, Locke believed that human nature is characterised by reason and tolerance. Like Hobbes, Locke believed that human nature allowed people to be selfish. This is apparent with the introduction of currency. In a natural state all people were equal and independent, and everyone had a natural right to defend his "life, health, liberty, or possessions".[43]:198 Most scholars trace the phrase "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness," in the American Declaration of Independence, to Locke's theory of rights,[44] though other origins have been suggested.[45]

Like Hobbes, Locke assumed that the sole right to defend in the state of nature was not enough, so people established a civil society to resolve conflicts in a civil way with help from government in a state of society. However, Locke never refers to Hobbes by name and may instead have been responding to other writers of the day.[46] Locke also advocated governmental separation of powers and believed that revolution is not only a right but an obligation in some circumstances. These ideas would come to have profound influence on the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States.

Limits to accumulation

According to Locke, unused property is wasteful and an offence against nature,[47] but, with the introduction of "durable" goods, men could exchange their excessive perishable goods for goods that would last longer and thus not offend the natural law. In his view, the introduction of money marks the culmination of this process, making possible the unlimited accumulation of property without causing waste through spoilage.[48] He also includes gold or silver as money because they may be "hoarded up without injury to anyone,"[49] since they do not spoil or decay in the hands of the possessor. In his view, the introduction of money eliminates the limits of accumulation. Locke stresses that inequality has come about by tacit agreement on the use of money, not by the social contract establishing civil society or the law of land regulating property. Locke is aware of a problem posed by unlimited accumulation but does not consider it his task. He just implies that government would function to moderate the conflict between the unlimited accumulation of property and a more nearly equal distribution of wealth; he does not identify which principles that government should apply to solve this problem. However, not all elements of his thought form a consistent whole. For example, labour theory of value of the Two Treatises of Government stands side by side with the demand-and-supply theory developed in a letter he wrote titled Some Considerations on the Consequences of the Lowering of Interest and the Raising of the Value of Money. Moreover, Locke anchors property in labour but in the end upholds the unlimited accumulation of wealth.[50]

On price theory

Locke's general theory of value and price is a supply and demand theory, which was set out in a letter to a Member of Parliament in 1691, titled Some Considerations on the Consequences of the Lowering of Interest and the Raising of the Value of Money.[51] He refers to supply as "quantity" and demand as "rent". "The price of any commodity rises or falls by the proportion of the number of buyer and sellers," and "that which regulates the price... [of goods] is nothing else but their quantity in proportion to their rent." The quantity theory of money forms a special case of this general theory. His idea is based on "money answers all things" (Ecclesiastes) or "rent of money is always sufficient, or more than enough," and "varies very little..." Locke concludes that as far as money is concerned, the demand is exclusively regulated by its quantity, regardless of whether the demand for money is unlimited or constant. He also investigates the determinants of demand and supply. For supply, he explains the value of goods as based on their scarcity and ability to be exchanged and consumed. He explains demand for goods as based on their ability to yield a flow of income. Locke develops an early theory of capitalisation, such as land, which has value because "by its constant production of saleable commodities it brings in a certain yearly income." He considers the demand for money as almost the same as demand for goods or land; it depends on whether money is wanted as medium of exchange. As a medium of exchange, he states that "money is capable by exchange to procure us the necessaries or conveniences of life," and for loanable funds, "it comes to be of the same nature with land by yielding a certain yearly income... or interest."

Monetary thoughts

Locke distinguishes two functions of money, as a "counter" to measure value, and as a "pledge" to lay claim to goods. He believes that silver and gold, as opposed to paper money, are the appropriate currency for international transactions. Silver and gold, he says, are treated to have equal value by all of humanity and can thus be treated as a pledge by anyone, while the value of paper money is only valid under the government which issues it.

Locke argues that a country should seek a favourable balance of trade, lest it fall behind other countries and suffer a loss in its trade. Since the world money stock grows constantly, a country must constantly seek to enlarge its own stock. Locke develops his theory of foreign exchanges, in addition to commodity movements, there are also movements in country stock of money, and movements of capital determine exchange rates. He considers the latter less significant and less volatile than commodity movements. As for a country's money stock, if it is large relative to that of other countries, he says it will cause the country's exchange to rise above par, as an export balance would do.

He also prepares estimates of the cash requirements for different economic groups (landholders, labourers and brokers). In each group he posits that the cash requirements are closely related to the length of the pay period. He argues the brokers – middlemen – whose activities enlarge the monetary circuit and whose profits eat into the earnings of labourers and landholders, have a negative influence on both personal and the public economy to which they supposedly contribute.

The self

Locke defines the self as "that conscious thinking thing, (whatever substance, made up of whether spiritual, or material, simple, or compounded, it matters not) which is sensible, or conscious of pleasure and pain, capable of happiness or misery, and so is concerned for itself, as far as that consciousness extends".[52] He does not, however, ignore "substance", writing that "the body too goes to the making the man."[53]

In his Essay, Locke explains the gradual unfolding of this conscious mind. Arguing against both the Augustinian view of man as originally sinful and the Cartesian position, which holds that man innately knows basic logical propositions, Locke posits an "empty" mind, a tabula rasa, which is shaped by experience; sensations and reflections being the two sources of all our ideas.[54]

Locke's Some Thoughts Concerning Education is an outline on how to educate this mind: he expresses the belief that education maketh the man, or, more fundamentally, that the mind is an "empty cabinet", with the statement, "I think I may say that of all the men we meet with, nine parts of ten are what they are, good or evil, useful or not, by their education."[55]

Locke also wrote that "the little and almost insensible impressions on our tender infancies have very important and lasting consequences."[55] He argued that the "associations of ideas" that one makes when young are more important than those made later because they are the foundation of the self: they are, put differently, what first mark the tabula rasa. In his Essay, in which both these concepts are introduced, Locke warns against, for example, letting "a foolish maid" convince a child that "goblins and sprites" are associated with the night for "darkness shall ever afterwards bring with it those frightful ideas, and they shall be so joined, that he can no more bear the one than the other."[56]

This theory came to be called "associationism", and it strongly influenced 18th-century thought, particularly educational theory, as nearly every educational writer warned parents not to allow their children to develop negative associations. It also led to the development of psychology and other new disciplines with David Hartley's attempt to discover a biological mechanism for associationism in his Observations on Man (1749).

Dream argument

Locke was critical of Descartes' version of the dream argument, with Locke making the counterargument that people cannot have physical pain in dreams as they do in waking life.[57]

Religious beliefs

Some scholars have seen Locke's political convictions as being based from his religious beliefs.[58][59][60] Locke's religious trajectory began in Calvinist trinitarianism, but by the time of the Reflections (1695) Locke was advocating not just Socinian views on tolerance but also Socinian Christology.[61] However Wainwright (1987) notes that in the posthumously published Paraphrase (1707) Locke's interpretation of one verse, Ephesians 1:10, is markedly different from that of Socinians like Biddle, and may indicate that near the end of his life Locke returned nearer to an Arian position, thereby accepting Christ's pre-existence.[62][61] Locke was at times not sure about the subject of original sin, so he was accused of Socinianism, Arianism, or Deism.[63] But he did not deny the reality of evil. Man was capable of waging unjust wars and committing crimes. Criminals had to be punished, even with the death penalty.[64] With regard to the Bible Locke was very conservative. He retained the doctrine of the verbal inspiration of the Scriptures.[33] The miracles were proof of the divine nature of the biblical message. Locke was convinced that the entire content of the Bible was in agreement with human reason (The reasonableness of Christianity, 1695).[65][33] Although Locke was an advocate of tolerance, he urged the authorities not to tolerate atheism, because he thought the denial of God's existence would undermine the social order and lead to chaos.[66] That excluded all atheistic varieties of philosophy and all attempts to deduce ethics and natural law from purely secular premises.[67] In Locke's opinion the cosmological argument was valid and proved God's existence. His political thought was based on Protestant Christian views.[67][68]

Philosophy From Religion

Locke's concept of man started with the belief in creation.[69] Like philosophers Hugo Grotius and Samuel Pufendorf, Locke equated natural law with the biblical revelation.[70][71][72] Locke derived the fundamental concepts of his political theory from biblical texts, in particular from Genesis 1 and 2 (creation), the Decalogue, the Golden Rule, the teachings of Jesus, and the letters of Paul the Apostle.[73] The Decalogue puts a person's life, their reputation, and property under God's protection.

Locke's philosophy on freedom is also derived from the Bible. Locke also derived basic human equality from the Bible, including the equality of the sexes, the starting point of the theological doctrine of Imago Dei.[74] To Locke, one of the consequences of the principle of equality was that all humans were created equally free and therefore governments needed the consent of the governed.[75] Locke compared the English Monarchy's rule over the British people to Adam's rule over Eve in Genesis, which was appointed by God.[76]

Following Locke's philosophy, the American Declaration of Independence founded human rights partially on the biblical belief in creation. Locke's doctrine that governments need the consent of the governed is also central to the Declaration of Independence.[77]

List of major works

  • A Letter Concerning Toleration, 1689.
    • (1690) A Second Letter Concerning Toleration
    • (1692) A Third Letter for Toleration
  • (1689) Two Treatises of Government (published throughout the 18th century by London bookseller Andrew Millar by commission for Thomas Hollis)[78]
  • (1690) An Essay Concerning Human Understanding
  • (1691) Some Considerations on the consequences of the Lowering of Interest and the Raising of the Value of Money
  • (1693) Some Thoughts Concerning Education
  • (1695) The Reasonableness of Christianity, as Delivered in the Scriptures
    • (1695) A Vindication of the Reasonableness of Christianity

Major posthumous manuscripts

  • (1660) First Tract of Government (or the English Tract)
  • (c.1662) Second Tract of Government (or the Latin Tract)
  • (1664) Questions Concerning the Law of Nature (definitive Latin text, with facing accurate English trans. in Robert Horwitz et al., eds., John Locke, Questions Concerning the Law of Nature, Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1990).
  • (1667) Essay Concerning Toleration
  • (1706) Of the Conduct of the Understanding
  • (1707) A paraphrase and notes on the Epistles of St. Paul to the Galatians, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Romans, Ephesians

See also

References

Notes

  1. ^ Fumerton, Richard (21 February 2000). "Foundationalist Theories of Epistemic Justification". Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  2. ^ David Bostock, Philosophy of Mathematics: An Introduction, Wiley-Blackwell, 2009, p. 43: "All of Descartes, Locke, Berkeley, and Hume supposed that mathematics is a theory of our ideas, but none of them offered any argument for this conceptualist claim, and apparently took it to be uncontroversial."
  3. ^ John W. Yolton, Realism and Appearances: An Essay in Ontology, Cambridge University Press, 2000, p. 136.
  4. ^ The Correspondence Theory of Truth (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
  5. ^ Grigoris Antoniou, John Slaney (eds.), Advanced Topics in Artificial Intelligence, Springer, 1998, p. 9.
  6. ^ Vere Claiborne Chappell (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Locke, Cambridge University Press, 1994, p. 56.
  7. ^ Locke, John (1690). Two Treatises of Government (10th edition): Chapter II, Section 6. Project Gutenberg. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  8. ^ Broad, Jacqueline (2006). "A Woman's Influence? John Locke and Damaris Masham on Moral Accountability". Journal of the History of Ideas. 67 (3): 489–510. JSTOR 30141038.
  9. ^ Hirschmann, Nancy J., Gender, Class, and Freedom in Modern Political Theory, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 2009. p. 79
  10. ^ Sharma, Urmila & Sharma, S.K., Western Political Thought, Atlantic Publishers, Washington, 2006, p. 440
  11. ^ Korab-Karpowicz, W. Julian, A History of Political Philosophy: From Thucydides to Locke, Global Scholarly Publications, New York, 2010, p. 291
  12. ^ Becker, Carl Lotus, The Declaration of Independence: A Study in the History of Political Ideas, Harcourt, Brace, 1922, p. 27
  13. ^ Baird, Forrest E; Kaufmann, Walter (2008), From Plato to Derrida, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, pp. 527–29, ISBN 978-0-13-158591-1
  14. ^ Baldwin, B.T. (1913). "John Locke's Contributions to Education". The Sewanee Review. 21 (2): 177–87 [179]. JSTOR 27532614. [He was a] pioneer in psychology,... and established on a substantial basis the introspective method of to-day; ...
  15. ^ Broad, CD (2000), Ethics And the History of Philosophy, UK: Routledge, ISBN 978-0-415-22530-4
  16. ^ Uzgalis, William. "John Locke". In Zalta, Edward N. (ed.). Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
  17. ^ Waldron 2002, p. 116.
  18. ^ Henning, Basil Duke (1983), The House of Commons, 1660–1690, 1, ISBN 978-0-436-19274-6, retrieved 28 August 2012
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  22. ^ Julian Hoppit, A Land of Liberty? England. 1689–1727 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2000), p. 195.
  23. ^ John Kenyon, Revolution Principles. The Politics of Party. 1689–1720 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1977), p. 200.
  24. ^ Kenyon, p. 51. Kenyon adds: "Any unbiassed study of the position shows in fact that it was Filmer, not Hobbes, Locke or Sidney, who was the most influential thinker of the age". Kenyon, p. 63.
  25. ^ Milton, John R. (2008) [2004]. "Locke, John (1632–1704)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/16885. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  26. ^ "The Three Greatest Men". August 2007. Retrieved 27 June 2018. Jefferson identified Bacon, Locke, and Newton as "the three greatest men that have ever lived, without any exception". Their works in the physical and moral sciences were instrumental in Jefferson's education and world view.
  27. ^ Jefferson, Thomas. "The Letters: 1743–1826 Bacon, Locke, and Newton". Retrieved 13 June 2009. Bacon, Locke and Newton, whose pictures I will trouble you to have copied for me: and as I consider them as the three greatest men that have ever lived, without any exception, and as having laid the foundation of those superstructures which have been raised in the Physical & Moral sciences.
  28. ^ "Jefferson called Bacon, Newton, and Locke, who had so indelibly shaped his ideas, "my trinity of the three greatest men the world had ever produced"". Explorer. Monticello. Retrieved 28 August 2012.
  29. ^ Seigel, Jerrold. The Idea of the Self: Thought and Experience in Western Europe since the Seventeenth Century. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (2005).
  30. ^ Taylor, Charles (1989), Sources of the Self: The Making of Modern Identity, Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
  31. ^ Schultz, Duane P. (2008). A History of Modern Psychology (ninth edition). Belmont, CA: Thomas Higher Education. pp. 47–48. ISBN 978-0-495-09799-0.
  32. ^ McGrath, Alister. 1998. Historical Theology, An Introduction to the History of Christian Thought. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers. pp. 214–15.
  33. ^ a b c Heussi 1956.
  34. ^ Olmstead 1960, p. 18.
  35. ^ Stahl, H (1957), "Baptisten", Die Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (in German), 3. Auflage, Band I, col. 863
  36. ^ Olmstead 1960, pp. 102–05.
  37. ^ Olmstead 1960, p. 5.
  38. ^ Cohen, Martin (2008), Philosophical Tales, Blackwell, p. 101.
  39. ^ Tully, James (2007), An Approach to Political Philosophy: Locke in Contexts, New York: Cambridge University Press, p. 128, ISBN 978-0-521-43638-0
  40. ^ Farr, J (1986), "I. 'So Vile and Miserable an Estate': The Problem of Slavery in Locke's Political Thought", Political Theory, 14 (2): 263–89, doi:10.1177/0090591786014002005, JSTOR 191463
  41. ^ Farr, J. (2008), "Locke, Natural Law, and New World Slavery", Political Theory, 36 (4): 495–522, doi:10.1177/0090591708317899
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Citations

  • Heussi, Karl (1956), Kompendium der Kirchengeschichte (in German), Tübingen, DE, 11. Auflage, Seite 398
  • Laslett, Peter (1988), Introduction, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press to Locke, John, Two Treatises of Government
  • Locke, John (1996), Grant, Ruth W; Tarcov, Nathan (eds.), Some Thoughts Concerning Education and of the Conduct of the Understanding, Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Co, p. 10
  • Locke, John (1997), Woolhouse, Roger (ed.), An Essay Concerning Human Understanding, New York: Penguin Books
  • Olmstead, Clifton E (1960), History of Religion in the United States, Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall
  • Waldron, Jeremy (2002), God, Locke, and Equality: Christian Foundations in Locke's Political Thought, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-89057-1

Sources

  • Ashcraft, Richard, 1986. Revolutionary Politics & Locke's Two Treatises of Government. Princeton: Princeton University Press. Discusses the relationship between Locke's philosophy and his political activities.
  • Ayers, Michael, 1991. Locke. Epistemology & Ontology Routledge (the standard work on Locke's Essay Concerning Human Understanding.)
  • Bailyn, Bernard, 1992 (1967). The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution. Harvard Uni. Press. Discusses the influence of Locke and other thinkers upon the American Revolution and on subsequent American political thought.
  • Cohen, Gerald, 1995. 'Marx and Locke on Land and Labour', in his Self-Ownership, Freedom and Equality, Oxford University Press.
  • Cox, Richard, Locke on War and Peace, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1960. A discussion of Locke's theory of international relations.
  • Chappell, Vere, ed., 1994. The Cambridge Companion to Locke. Cambridge U.P. excerpt and text search
  • Dunn, John, 1984. Locke. Oxford Uni. Press. A succinct introduction.
  • ———, 1969. The Political Thought of John Locke: An Historical Account of the Argument of the "Two Treatises of Government". Cambridge Uni. Press. Introduced the interpretation which emphasises the theological element in Locke's political thought.
  • Hudson, Nicholas, "John Locke and the Tradition of Nominalism," in: Nominalism and Literary Discourse, ed. Hugo Keiper, Christoph Bode, and Richard Utz (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 1997), pp. 283–99.
  • Mack, Eric (2008). "Locke, John (1632–1704)". In Hamowy, Ronald (ed.). The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage; Cato Institute. pp. 305–07. doi:10.4135/9781412965811.n184. ISBN 978-1-4129-6580-4. LCCN 2008009151. OCLC 750831024.
  • Macpherson, C.B. The Political Theory of Possessive Individualism: Hobbes to Locke (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1962). Establishes the deep affinity from Hobbes to Harrington, the Levellers, and Locke through to nineteenth-century utilitarianism.
  • Moseley, Alexander (2007), John Locke: Continuum Library of Educational Thought, Continuum, ISBN 978-0-8264-8405-5
  • Pangle, Thomas, The Spirit of Modern Republicanism: The Moral Vision of the American Founders and the Philosophy of Locke (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1988; paperback ed., 1990), 334 pages. Challenges Dunn's, Tully's, Yolton's, and other conventional readings.
  • Robinson, Dave; Groves, Judy (2003), Introducing Political Philosophy, Icon Books, ISBN 978-1-84046-450-4
  • Rousseau, George S. (2004), Nervous Acts: Essays on Literature, Culture and Sensibility, Palgrave Macmillan, ISBN 978-1-4039-3453-6
  • Strauss, Leo. Natural Right and History, chap. 5B (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1953). Argues from a non-Marxist point of view for a deep affinity between Hobbes and Locke.
  • Strauss, Leo (1958), "Critical Note: Locke's Doctrine of Natural Law", The American Political Science Review, 52 (2): 490–501, doi:10.2307/1952329, JSTOR 1952329 A critique of W. von Leyden's edition of Locke's unpublished writings on natural law.
  • Tully, James, 1980. A Discourse on Property : John Locke and his Adversaries. Cambridge Uni. Press
  • Waldron, Jeremy, 2002. God, Locke and Equality. Cambridge Uni. Press.
  • Yolton, John W., ed., 1969. John Locke: Problems and Perspectives. Cambridge Uni. Press
  • Yolton, John W., ed., 1993. A Locke Dictionary. Oxford: Blackwell.
  • Zuckert, Michael, Launching Liberalism: On Lockean Political Philosophy. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas
  • Locke Studies, appearing annually from 2001, formerly The Locke Newsletter (1970–2000), publishes scholarly work on John Locke.

External links

Works

Resources

A Letter Concerning Toleration

A Letter Concerning Toleration by John Locke was originally published in 1689. Its initial publication was in Latin, though it was immediately translated into other languages. Locke's work appeared amidst a fear that Catholicism might be taking over England, and responds to the problem of religion and government by proposing religious toleration as the answer. This "letter" is addressed to an anonymous "Honored Sir": this was actually Locke's close friend Philipp van Limborch, who published it without Locke's knowledge.

An Essay Concerning Human Understanding

An Essay Concerning Human Understanding is a work by John Locke concerning the foundation of human knowledge and understanding. It first appeared in 1689 (although dated 1690) with the printed title An Essay Concerning Humane Understanding. He describes the mind at birth as a blank slate (tabula rasa, although he did not use those actual words) filled later through experience. The essay was one of the principal sources of empiricism in modern philosophy, and influenced many enlightenment philosophers, such as David Hume and George Berkeley.

Book I of the Essay is Locke's attempt to refute the rationalist notion of innate ideas. Book II sets out Locke's theory of ideas, including his distinction between passively acquired simple ideas, such as "red," "sweet," "round," etc., and actively built complex ideas, such as numbers, causes and effects, abstract ideas, ideas of substances, identity, and diversity. Locke also distinguishes between the truly existing primary qualities of bodies, like shape, motion and the arrangement of minute particles, and the secondary qualities that are "powers to produce various sensations in us" such as "red" and "sweet." These secondary qualities, Locke claims, are dependent on the primary qualities. He also offers a theory of personal identity, offering a largely psychological criterion. Book III is concerned with language, and Book IV with knowledge, including intuition, mathematics, moral philosophy, natural philosophy ("science"), faith, and opinion.

Classical liberalism

Classical liberalism is a political ideology and a branch of liberalism which advocates civil liberties under the rule of law with an emphasis on economic freedom. Closely related to economic liberalism, it developed in the early 19th century, building on ideas from the previous century as a response to urbanisation and to the Industrial Revolution in Europe and the United States. Notable individuals whose ideas contributed to classical liberalism include John Locke, Jean-Baptiste Say, Thomas Robert Malthus and David Ricardo. It drew on the classical economic ideas espoused by Adam Smith in Book One of The Wealth of Nations and on a belief in natural law, utilitarianism and progress. The term classical liberalism has often been applied in retrospect to distinguish earlier 19th-century liberalism from social liberalism.

Contractualism

Contractualism is a term in philosophy which refers either to a family of political theories in the social contract tradition (when used in this sense, the term is synonymous with contractarianism), or to the ethical theory developed in recent years by T. M. Scanlon, especially in his book What We Owe to Each Other (published 1998).Social contract theorists from the history of political thought include Hugo Grotius (1625), Thomas Hobbes (1651), Samuel Pufendorf (1673), John Locke (1689), Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1762), and Immanuel Kant (1797); more recently, John Rawls (1971), David Gauthier (1986) and Philip Pettit (1997).

Innatism

Innatism is a philosophical and epistemological doctrine that holds that the mind is born with ideas/knowledge, and that therefore the mind is not a "blank slate" at birth, as early empiricists such as John Locke claimed. It asserts that not all knowledge is gained from experience and the senses. Plato and Descartes are prominent philosophers in the development of innatism and the notion that the mind is already born with ideas, knowledge and beliefs. Both philosophers emphasize that experiences are the key to unlocking this knowledge but not the source of the knowledge itself. Essentially, no knowledge is derived exclusively from one's experiences as empiricists like John Locke suggested.

John Locke (Lost)

John Locke is a fictional character played by Terry O'Quinn on the ABC television series Lost. He is named after the English philosopher of the same name. In 2007, O'Quinn won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his portrayal of Locke.Locke is introduced in the first season as a mysterious, intellectual and stoic character with an affinity for living out in the wild, a penchant for hunting and tracking. He believes in mystical and spiritual explanations for why things happen on the island due to a self-described "miracle" happening to him after the crash of Oceanic 815. His stoicism and mystical outlook dominate his character and are the basis for many of his relationships and interactions on the show.

John Locke (Massachusetts)

John Locke (February 14, 1764 – March 29, 1855), was a U.S. Representative from Massachusetts. He was born in Hopkinton, Middlesex County, and attended Andover Academy and Dartmouth College, eventually graduating from Harvard University in 1792. He was admitted to the Massachusetts bar and began practicing law in Ashby in 1796.

John Locke (musician)

John Tilden Locke (September 25, 1943 – August 4, 2006) was an American rock keyboardist and a member of the rock group Spirit. Locke was also a member of the band Nazareth in the early 1980s.

John Locke Foundation

The John Locke Foundation (JLF) is a conservative think tank based in North Carolina. The organization was founded in 1990 to work "for truth, for freedom, and for the future of North Carolina." It is named after the philosopher John Locke, who was a primary contributor to classical liberalism. JLF was co-founded by Art Pope, a North Carolina businessman active in politics. Pope's family foundation provides most of the support for the center.The organization's stated mission is to "employ research, journalism, and outreach programs to transform government through competition, innovation, personal freedom, and personal responsibility. JLF seeks a better balance between the public sector and private institutions of family, faith, community, and enterprise."The organization is concerned primarily with state and local issues. JLF advocates lowering taxes, and encouraging free markets. Kory Swanson is its current president. The John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy was in its initial stages a project of the John Locke Foundation.

John Locke Lectures

The John Locke Lectures are a series of annual lectures in philosophy given at the University of Oxford. They are one of the world's most prestigious academic lecture series, comparable to the Gifford Lectures given in Scottish universities. They were established in 1950 by the bequest of Henry Wilde.

The first lecture series was offered to Ludwig Wittgenstein, who eventually declined. According to his biographers, he felt uncomfortable giving formal lectures where the audience would not be asking or answering questions.

Labor theory of property

The labor theory of property (also called the labor theory of appropriation, labor theory of ownership, labor theory of entitlement, or principle of first appropriation) is a theory of natural law that holds that property originally comes about by the exertion of labor upon natural resources. The theory has been used to justify the homestead principle, which holds that one may gain whole permanent ownership of an unowned natural resource by performing an act of original appropriation.

In his Second Treatise on Government, the philosopher John Locke asked by what right an individual can claim to own one part of the world, when, according to the Bible, God gave the world to all humanity in common. He answered that persons own themselves and therefore their own labor. When a person works, that labor enters into the object. Thus, the object becomes the property of that person.

However, Locke held that one may only appropriate property in this fashion if the Lockean proviso held true, that is, "... there is enough, and as good, left in common for others".

Nazareth (band)

Nazareth are a Scottish hard rock band formed in 1968, that had several hits in the United Kingdom, as well as in several other West European countries in the early 1970s, and established an international audience with their 1975 album Hair of the Dog, which featured their hits "Hair of the Dog" and a cover of the ballad "Love Hurts". The band continues to record and tour.

Social contract

In moral and political philosophy, the social contract is a theory or model that originated during the Age of Enlightenment and usually concerns the legitimacy of the authority of the state over the individual. Social contract arguments typically posit that individuals have consented, either explicitly or tacitly, to surrender some of their freedoms and submit to the authority (of the ruler, or to the decision of a majority) in exchange for protection of their remaining rights or maintenance of the social order. The relation between natural and legal rights is often a topic of social contract theory. The term takes its name from The Social Contract (French: Du contrat social ou Principes du droit politique), a 1762 book by Jean-Jacques Rousseau that discussed this concept. Although the antecedents of social contract theory are found in antiquity, in Greek and Stoic philosophy and Roman and Canon Law, the heyday of the social contract was the mid-17th to early 19th centuries, when it emerged as the leading doctrine of political legitimacy.

The starting point for most social contract theories is an examination of the human condition absent of any political order (termed the "state of nature" by Thomas Hobbes). In this condition, individuals' actions are bound only by their personal power and conscience. From this shared starting point, social contract theorists seek to demonstrate why a rational individual would voluntarily consent to give up their natural freedom to obtain the benefits of political order. Prominent of 17th- and 18th-century theorists of social contract and natural rights include Hugo Grotius (1625), Thomas Hobbes (1651), Samuel von Pufendorf (1673), John Locke (1689), Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1762) and Immanuel Kant (1797), each approaching the concept of political authority differently. Grotius posited that individual humans had natural rights. Thomas Hobbes famously said that in a "state of nature", human life would be "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short". In the absence of political order and law, everyone would have unlimited natural freedoms, including the "right to all things" and thus the freedom to plunder, rape and murder; there would be an endless "war of all against all" (bellum omnium contra omnes). To avoid this, free men contract with each other to establish political community (civil society) through a social contract in which they all gain security in return for subjecting themselves to an absolute sovereign, one man or an assembly of men. Though the sovereign's edicts may well be arbitrary and tyrannical, Hobbes saw absolute government as the only alternative to the terrifying anarchy of a state of nature. Hobbes asserted that humans consent to abdicate their rights in favor of the absolute authority of government (whether monarchical or parliamentary). Pufendorf disputed Hobbes's equation of a state of nature with war. Alternatively, Locke and Rousseau argued that we gain civil rights in return for accepting the obligation to respect and defend the rights of others, giving up some freedoms to do so.

The central assertion that social contract theory approaches is that law and political order are not natural, but human creations. The social contract and the political order it creates are simply the means towards an end—the benefit of the individuals involved—and legitimate only to the extent that they fulfill their part of the agreement. Hobbes argued that government is not a party to the original contract and citizens are not obligated to submit to the government when it is too weak to act effectively to suppress factionalism and civil unrest. According to other social contract theorists, when the government fails to secure their natural rights (Locke) or satisfy the best interests of society (called the "general will" by Rousseau), citizens can withdraw their obligation to obey, or change the leadership through elections or other means including, when necessary, violence. Locke believed that natural rights were inalienable, and therefore the rule of God superseded government authority, while Rousseau believed that democracy (self-rule) was the best way to ensure welfare while maintaining individual freedom under the rule of law. The Lockean concept of the social contract was invoked in the United States Declaration of Independence. Social contract theories were eclipsed in the 19th century in favor of utilitarianism, Hegelianism and Marxism; they were revived in the 20th century, notably in the form of a thought experiment by John Rawls.

Some Thoughts Concerning Education

Some Thoughts Concerning Education is a 1693 treatise on the education of gentlemen written by the English philosopher John Locke. For over a century, it was the most important philosophical work on education in England. It was translated into almost all of the major written European languages during the eighteenth century, and nearly every European writer on education after Locke, including Jean-Jacques Rousseau, acknowledged its influence.

In his Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690), Locke outlined a new theory of mind, contending that the gentleman's mind was a tabula rasa or "blank slate"; that is, it did not contain any innate ideas. Some Thoughts Concerning Education explains how to educate that mind using three distinct methods: the development of a healthy body; the formation of a virtuous character; and the choice of an appropriate academic curriculum.

Locke wrote the letters that would eventually become Some Thoughts for an aristocratic friend, but his advice had a broader appeal since his educational principles suggested anyone could acquire the same kind of character as the aristocrats for whom Locke originally intended the work.

State of nature

The state of nature is a concept used in moral and political philosophy, religion, social contract theories and international law to denote the hypothetical conditions of what the lives of people might have been like before societies came into existence. Philosophers of the state of nature theory deduce that there must have been a time before organized societies existed, and this presumption thus raises questions such as: "What was life like before civil society?"; "How did government first emerge from such a starting position?," and; "What are the hypothetical reasons for entering a state of society by establishing a nation-state?".

In some versions of social contract theory, there are no rights in the state of nature, only freedoms, and it is the contract that creates rights and obligations. In other versions the opposite occurs: the contract imposes restrictions upon individuals that curtail their natural rights.

Societies existing before or without a political state are currently studied in such fields as paleolithic history, and the anthropological subfields of archaeology, cultural anthropology, social anthropology, and ethnology, which investigate the social and power-related structures of indigenous and uncontacted peoples living in tribal communities.

Tabula rasa

Tabula rasa () is the epistemological theory that individuals are born without built-in mental content and that therefore all knowledge comes from experience or perception. Proponents of tabula rasa disagree with the doctrine of innatism which holds that the mind is born already in possession of certain knowledge. Generally, proponents of the tabula rasa theory also favour the "nurture" side of the nature versus nurture debate when it comes to aspects of one's personality, social and emotional behaviour, knowledge and sapience.

The Substitute (Lost)

"The Substitute" is the fourth television episode of the American Broadcasting Company's sixth season of the serial drama television series Lost and 107th episode overall. The episode aired on February 16, 2010, on ABC. It was directed by Tucker Gates and written by executive producer Elizabeth Sarnoff and producer Melinda Hsu Taylor. John Locke is the character the episode is centered on.

In 2007, The Man in Black, while impersonating John Locke (Terry O'Quinn), attempts to recruit James "Sawyer" Ford (Josh Holloway) and reveals the survivors' purpose on the Island. Meanwhile, Jacob's (Mark Pellegrino) bodyguards, led by Ilana Verdansky (Zuleikha Robinson), decide to bury the corpse of the real John Locke. In the "flash-sideways", Locke, still wheelchair-bound, deals with the difficulties of his life.

Two Treatises of Government

Two Treatises of Government (or Two Treatises of Government: In the Former, The False Principles, and Foundation of Sir Robert Filmer, and His Followers, Are Detected and Overthrown. The Latter Is an Essay Concerning The True Original, Extent, and End of Civil Government) is a work of political philosophy published anonymously in 1689 by John Locke. The First Treatise attacks patriarchalism in the form of sentence-by-sentence refutation of Robert Filmer's Patriarcha, while the Second Treatise outlines Locke's ideas for a more civilized society based on natural rights and contract theory.

This publication contrasts former political works by Locke himself. In Two Tracts on Government, written in 1660, Locke defends a very conservative position; however, Locke never published it. In 1669, Locke co-authored the Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina, which endorses aristocracy, slavery and serfdom. Although some dispute the extent to which the Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina portray Locke's own philosophy, vs. that of the Lord proprietors of the colony. The document was a legal document written for and signed and sealed by the eight Lord proprietors to whom Charles II had granted the colony; Locke was only a paid secretary. He wrote it much as a lawyer writes a will.

William John Locke

William John Locke (20 March 1863 – 15 May 1930) was a British novelist, dramatist and playwright, best known for his short stories

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