return to list of latest ideas

Single Idea 19846

[catalogued under 25. Society / B. The State / 2. State Legitimacy / e. General will]

Full Idea

The more harmony reigns in the assemblies, that is to say, the closer opinions come to unanimity, the more dominant too is the general will.

Gist of Idea

The more unanimous the assembly, the stronger the general will becomes


Jean-Jacques Rousseau (The Social Contract (tr Cress) [1762], IV.2)

A Reaction

This seems important, because the general will comes in degrees. A decision from the assembly would come with an index number indicating its strength. His dream is obviously to get close to unanimity on all decisions. Maybe! Brexit 52%!

Book Reference

Rousseau,Jean-Jacques: 'The Basic Political Writings', ed/tr. Cress,Donald A. [Hackett 1987], p.205