Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768ffcd9cc-s8fcc Total loading time: 0.475 Render date: 2022-12-05T21:44:11.668Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

5 - Democratic Republicanism in the Early Modern Period

from Part II - Hierarchies

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 February 2022

Hannah Dawson
Affiliation:
King's College London
Annelien de Dijn
Affiliation:
Universiteit Utrecht, The Netherlands
Get access

Summary

This chapter aims to recover a specific intellectual tradition, a tradition that I describe as ‘democratic republicanism’. I do so by focusing on four different early modern thinkers: Johan and Pieter de la Court, Baruch Spinoza and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. I show that they were all part of the broader republican tradition unearthed by Quentin Skinner. But, as this chapter shows as well, the De la Courts, Spinoza, and Rousseau differed from English republicans such as Harrington and Sidney in that they were more democratic (which is, of course, why I call them ‘democratic’ republicans). They were more democratic, first and foremost, in a very straightforward way: they were in favour of a relatively inclusive political regime that they themselves described as ‘democracy’. But I will also show that they were more democratic in a second and perhaps less obvious sense of the word, in that they were committed to majoritarianism, to the idea that freedom could only be preserved if the people – which meant, in the absence of unanimity, the majority of the people – was allowed to rule without restraint.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×