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  • Published: 21 November 2012
  • ISBN: 9780141191751
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 356
  • RRP: $23.00

Of The Social Contract and Other Political Writings



Since its first publication in 1762, Of the Social Contract has shaped political thinking. Viewed by some as a revolutionary statement of democratic freedoms and by others as a precursor of tyranny, it has guided and inspired activists from the

'Man was born free, and everywhere he is in chains.'
These are the famous opening words of a treatise that has stirred vigorous debate ever since its first publication in 1762. Rejecting the view that anyone has a natural right to wield authority over others, Rousseau argues instead for a pact, or 'social contract', that should exist between all the citizens of a state and that should be the source of sovereign power. From this fundamental premise, he goes on to consider issues of liberty and law, freedom and justice, arriving at a view of society that has seemed to some a blueprint for totalitarianism, to others a declaration of democratic principles.
Translated by Quintin Hoare
With a new introduction by Christopher Bertram

  • Published: 21 November 2012
  • ISBN: 9780141191751
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 356
  • RRP: $23.00

Other books in the series

On Sparta
Ethics
Love
Annals
Military Dispatches