return to list of latest ideas

Single Idea 19781

[catalogued under 25. Society / C. Social Justice / 4. Legal Rights / c. Property rights]

Full Idea

From the cultivation of land, there necessarily followed the division of land; and from property once recognised, the first rules of justice. For in order to render everyone what is his, it is necessary that everyone can have something.

Gist of Idea

Land cultivation led to a general right of ownership, administered justly


Jean-Jacques Rousseau (Discourse on the Origin of Inequality [1754], Part II)

A Reaction

This looks rather obviously correct. You don't plant crops if you are not protected in your right to reap what you have sown, and you would expect to re-sow from the proceeds. Other people will want you to do this.

Book Reference

Rousseau,Jean-Jacques: 'The Basic Political Writings', ed/tr. Cress,Donald A. [Hackett 1987], p.66