Essay on Rousseau 's Argument On Public Discourse

1193 Words Nov 16th, 2016 5 Pages
Analyze and evaluate Rousseau’s argument that public discourse is more likely to lead legislation away from the general will than toward it. Do you agree with this argument? If not, why not? If so, under what conditions?
Introduction and Thesis In Rousseau’s On the Social Contract, he makes the argument that public discourse and debate is likely to lead the legislative body away from the general will rather than towards it. This paper makes an agreement with Rousseau’s assertion and argument that public discourse generally has a negative effect on the legislations reaction towards the general will, causing them to divert away from the general will. However, the conditions for this to be true must be particular also, which this analysis will also explain towards the conclusion.
The Three Forms of Will
In order to analyze and evaluate Rousseau’s argument on public discourse and its relation to the general will as well as the mechanisms in civil society that cause the general will to be included in legislation and not included, one must understand the term “general will” as Rousseau uses it. But, in addition to the general will, Rousseau makes use of two other types of will, particular and will-of-all. It is also crucial to understand these two forms of will. Firstly, particular will is the the desire of the individual person. An example in modern society would be a desire to have objects which cause pollution.
Secondly, the will-of-all is simply the aggregate of particular…

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