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Books > Politics & Social Sciences > Philosophy > Political > 0300100183
  1. Two Treatises of Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration
    Two Treatises of Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration
    Two Treatises of Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration
    Two Treatises of Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration
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  2. Two Treatises of Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (180 reviews)
    Price R572.00

Additional Information

Among the most influential writings in the history of Western political thought, John Locke’s Two Treatises of Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration remain vital to political debates today, more than three centuries after they were written. The complete texts appear in this volume, accompanied by interpretive essays by three prominent Locke scholars.

Ian Shapiro’s introduction places Locke’s political writings in historical and biographical context. John Dunn explores both the intellectual context in which Locke wrote the Two Treatises of Government and A Letter Concerning Toleration and the major interpretive controversies surrounding their meaning. Ruth Grant offers a comprehensive discussion of Locke’s views on women and the family, and Shapiro contributes an essay on the democratic elements of Locke’s political theory. Taken together, the texts and essays in this volume offer invaluable insights into the history of ideas and the enduring influence of Locke’s political thought.

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John Locke
Edition Unstated
Yale University Press
Yale University Press
Yale University Press
Yale University Press
Yale University Press
Most Helpful Customer Reviews

It is well known, of course, that John Locke was a major inspiration behind the Founding Fathers. With this book, it is easy to understand why.

In the "First Essay On Government", Locke takes the argument of the "divine right" of kings--and uses a brilliant, clever, and effective combination of Biblical theology and logical argument to completely obliterate that concept.

With that out of the way, Locke turned to write his "Second Essay On Civil Government", where the question is asked: Now that we have disproved any "entitlement" to royalty...where do we go from here? What is the basis for governing a civil society?

The major highlight of this treatise is Chapter 2, in which Locke formally establishes the doctrine of Natural Rights. He starts with the natural state of Man, leading up to the necessary elements of Man's existence--the philisophical necessities, of course, being "rights".

There is an interesting moment where Locke questions... Read more
I'm happy to have read John Locke's Second Treatise of Government. In this work, Locke argues that the purpose of government is to preserve people's life, freedom, and property, or as he writes life, "liberty," and property. The American founders were very much influenced by Locke's work here, which is why Americans' right to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" is guaranteed in our Declaration of Independence.

In the treatise, Locke tells the story that we were once in a state of nature, where we were all free and equal. Life was good for us all except when people wanted retribution for harms done, so this state of nature deteriorated into a state of war. Then we agreed to form governments to have an outside arbitrator who could provide us protections for our lives, freedoms, and property. It's unclear if Locke really believes this account but in some passages seems to half-heartedly endorse it. At any rate, Locke thinks that a sufficient reason... Read more
While it's tough to slog through the LONG sentences and convoluted writing of a 17th century lawyer, THIS is one of the key sources that the Framers of America's Constitution used for the basis of their thinking.
Without John Locke - along with others of the European Enlightenment - the "American Experiment" would likely have never happened.
Worth the time and the money for anyone who wants to better understand what America was REALLY meant to be.
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