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The Opinion of Mankind – Sociability and the Theory of the State from Hobbes to Smith - Princeton Scholarship Online
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The Opinion of Mankind: Sociability and the Theory of the State from Hobbes to Smith

Paul Sagar


What is the modern state? Conspicuously undertheorized in recent political theory, this question persistently animated the best minds of the Enlightenment. Recovering David Hume and Adam Smith's underappreciated contributions to the history of political thought, this book considers how, following Thomas Hobbes's epochal intervention in the mid-seventeenth century, subsequent thinkers grappled with explaining how the state came into being, what it fundamentally might be, and how it could claim rightful authority over those subject to its power. Hobbes has cast a long shadow over Western politic ... More

Keywords: modern state, opinion of mankind, political thought, Western political thought, Scottish Enlightenment, human nature, secular world, David Hume, Adam Smith, Thomas Hobbes

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2018 Print ISBN-13: 9780691178882
Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: September 2018 DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691178882.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Paul Sagar, author
University of Cambridge