A State of Lesser Hope

Hobbes Studies 31 (2):147-165 (2018)
  Copy   BIBTEX


_ Source: _Volume 31, Issue 2, pp 147 - 165 Though Hobbes consistently differentiates between the ‘subject’ and ‘servant’ across Elements of Law, On the Citizen, and Leviathan, we currently lack an exhaustive account of the Hobbesian servant. In this paper, I argue that the distinction would have profound consequences for one’s disposition toward both the commonwealth and the community at large. Because the servant joins under the immediate threat of violence and covenants directly with the sovereign, we would expect her initial experience to contribute to a fundamentally more pessimistic attitude toward the commonwealth and atomistic understanding of her place in the body politic. On one level, this distinction could be used to distinguish privileged populations from otherwise marginalized groups. On another level, however, in revealing both the brute reality of sovereign power and the ways in which she is alienated from it, the servant gives us a more accurate understanding of the commonwealth than the subject’s own.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 94,698

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library


Added to PP

17 (#887,665)

6 months
5 (#880,321)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Caleb Miller
Messiah College

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Leviathan.Thomas Hobbes - 1651 - Harmondsworth,: Penguin Books. Edited by C. B. Macpherson.

Add more references