Thomas Hobbes on Civility, Magnanimity, and Scientific Discourse
Thomas Hobbes contends that a wise sovereign would censor books and limit verbal discourse for the majority of citizens. But this article contends that it is consistent with Hobbes’s philosophy to claim that a wise sovereign would allow a small number of citizens – those individuals who engage in scientific discourse and who are magnanimous and just – to disagree freely amongst themselves, engaging in discourse on controversial topics. This article reflects on Hobbes’s contention that these individuals can tolerate one another’s differences and engage in verbal disagreement without any risk to the commonwealth. By engaging in open discourse, these individuals can better create valuable technology and provide counsel to the sovereign that is necessary to maintain peace.
College of Arts and Sciences
Corsa, A. J. (2021, July 26). Thomas Hobbes on civility, magnanimity, and scientific discourse. Hobbes Studies, 1-26. https://doi.org/10.1163/18750257-BJA10032