The theory of freedom in Jean Jacques Rousseau: A critical assessment

  • E M Ome
Keywords: Contract, Freedom, Politics, Inequality, Authenticity


Rousseau addresses freedom more than any other problem of political philosophy and aims to explain how man in the state of nature is blessed with an enviable total freedom. He believed that modern man's enslavement to his own needs was responsible for all sorts of societal ills, from exploitation and domination of others to poor self-esteem and depression. The purpose of this paper is in fact to explain the theory of freedom developed by Jean-Jacques Rousseau in his work “The Social Contract.” This paper argues that the central topic of “The Social Contract” is how people might construct a genuinely free political society and it is plausible to hold that this is so given Rousseau's own famous formulation of the "problem" to which the social contract is the solution, which says that the members of the political community must "remain as free as before."

Key Concepts: Contract, Freedom, Politics, Inequality, Authenticity


eISSN: 1119-443X