phil rousseau draft

phil rousseau draft - Bridgid Regan PHIL0080 Herb Wilson...

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Bridgid Regan PHIL0080 Herb Wilson April 10, 2008 Question: Why, according to Rousseau, are so-called "representative democracies" not democracies at all? The word democracy is taken from the Greek words demos meaning “the people” and cratos meaning “power” or “government”. A representative democracy is a government directed by elected officials. Jean-Jacques Rousseau believes that these representative democracies are not democracies at all, and that democracy itself is almost an impossible type of government. To understand why he has this view, we must start with comprehending exactly what a government is, and why democracy is poor form of it. To maintain a peaceful state, a sovereign must engage laws upon the public to keep order. In a democracy these laws come from the general will of the public. There needs to be an intermediate between the sovereign and the general public; this is where a government comes in.
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