TSCD: Book IV, Chapters VII, VIII, and IX

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER VII: THE CENSORSHIP As the law is the declaration of the general will, the censorship is the declaration of the public judgment: public opinion is the form of law which the censor administers, and, like the prince, only applies to particular cases. The censorial tribunal, […]

TSCD: Book IV, Chapters IV, V, and VI

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER IV: THE ROMAN COMITIA We are without well-certified records of the first period of Rome’s existence; it even appears very probable that most of the stories told about it are fables; indeed, generally speaking, the most instructive part of the history of peoples, that which […]

TSCD: Book IV, Chapters I, II, and III

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER I: THAT THE GENERAL WILL IS INDESTRUCTIBLE As long as several men in assembly regard themselves as a single body, they have only a single will which is concerned with their common preservation and general well-being. In this case, all the springs of the State […]

TSCD: Book III, Chapters XV, XVI, XVII, and XVIII

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER XV: DEPUTIES OR REPRESENTATIVES As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall. When it is necessary to march out […]

TSCD: Book III, Chapters X, XI, XII, XIII, and XIV

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER X: THE ABUSE OF GOVERNMENT AND ITS TENDENCY TO DEGENERATE As the particular will acts constantly in opposition to the general will, the government continually exerts itself against the Sovereignty. The greater this exertion becomes, the more the constitution changes; and, as there is in […]

TSCD: Book III, Chapters VII, VIII, and IX

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER VII: MIXED GOVERNMENTS Strictly speaking, there is no such thing as a simple government. An isolated ruler must have subordinate magistrates; a popular government must have a head. There is therefore, in the distribution of the executive power, always a gradation from the greater to […]

TSCD: Book III, Chapters IV, V, and VI

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER IV: DEMOCRACY He who makes the law knows better than any one else how it should be executed and interpreted. It seems then impossible to have a better constitution than that in which the executive and legislative powers are united; but this very fact renders […]

TSCD: Book III, Chapters I, II, and III

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole Before speaking of the different forms of government, let us try to fix the exact sense of the word, which has not yet been very clearly explained. CHAPTER I: GOVERNMENT IN GENERAL I warn the reader that this chapter requires careful reading, and that I am […]

TSCD: Book II, Chapters VII, VIII, IX, and X

by Jean-Jacques Rousseau translated by George Douglas Howard Cole CHAPTER VII: THE LEGISLATOR In order to discover the rules of society best suited to nations, a superior intelligence beholding all the passions of men without experiencing any of them would be needed. This intelligence would have to be wholly unrelated to our nature, while knowing […]

TSCD: Book II, Chapters XI and XII

CHAPTER XI: THE VARIOUS SYSTEMS OF LEGISLATION If we ask in what precisely consists the greatest good of all, which should be the end of every system of legislation, we shall find it reduce itself to two main objects, liberty and equality—liberty, because all particular dependence means so much force taken from the body of […]

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