Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Compare and contrast the ways in which one of the main ideologies Essay

Compare and contrast the ways in which one of the main ideologies (i.e. liberalism, socialism, conservatism, - Essay Example This study is being undertaken in order to conceptualize a thorough understanding of the development of liberalism throughout the years. Discussion Liberalism came about in the Enlightenment period and it was initiated by the views of the English philosopher Thomas Hobbes who set forth that man â€Å"always acts with a view to his own benefit, with the avoidance of violent death as the greatest of evils† (Sorrentino, p. 2). He saw the government as a necessary agency which would protect man from his instincts in gaining as much as he can from his actions. This thought process was supported to a certain extent by John Locke, but with some modification. Locke leaned more on the belief that man is by nature good and was rational enough in following his natural rights – that of protecting and preserving his life under the inherent laws and conditions appropriated by God. Locke also emphasized that there is a need for man to protect his natural rights and to carry out the na tural rules given to him by God (Sorrentino, p. 3). In a way, this formed the basis of the thought process in liberalism which accepts the need for government control. Nevertheless, the importance of protecting man’s basic rights has been highlighted by early liberalism ideals. French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau supported the fact that government was needed in order to unite people (Sorrentino, p. 3). These philosophers had different views of the social contract as they supported the liberal ideal that government is essential in protecting social harmony. The ideas of these philosophers were advocated and supported during the Enlightenment era and further supported by nineteenth century philosophers. Adam Smith also saw the roots of his commercial liberalism in these philosophers. He believed that commercial liberty has a natural counterpart in the constitutional order where the civil and political rights are protected (Sorrentino, p. 4). Jeremy Bentham had also a simil ar view with Adam Smith as he advocated the laissez faire policy in economic policies. Bentham however did not support the idea of natural law because he believed that the state is there to protect human welfare. This view seems to be supported in the current context of liberalism. Liberalism somehow evolved with the period of Enlightenment as the people seemed to take on a more ‘enlightened’ view of the world and of their natural rights within contemporary society. In general however, it is John Locke who is credited for advocating the formal foundations of liberalism. From his ideas, liberalism found its roots in his claims that all men are â€Å"by nature free and equal against claims that God has made all people naturally subject to a monarch† (Tuckness). Locke believed that people have basic rights to life, liberty, and property and these rights are the foundations of a liberal society. Locke’s belief in the freedom and equality of men justified the e xistence of legitimate government based on a social contract where men transferred their rights to the government in order to secure their enjoyment of their lives, liberty, and their property (Tuckness). However, even before these concepts of liberalism were laid out, the principles which have fundamentally differentiated liberalism from other ideals have already been present in civil society. The â€Å"

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