Front Cover
Oxford University Press, 1996 - Philosophy - 508 pages
321 Reviews
He that is to govern a whole nation, must read in himself, not this, or that particular man; but mankind. Leviathan is both a magnificent literary achievement and the greatest work of political philosophy in the English language. Permanently challenging, it has found new applications and new refutations in every generation. Hobbes argues that human beings are first and foremost concerned with their own individual desires and fears. He shows that a conflict of each against every man can only be avoided by the adoption of a compact to enforce peace. The compact involves giving up some of our natural freedom to a sovereign power which will enforce the laws of peace on all citizens. Hobbes also analyses the subversive forces - religion, ambition, private conscience - that threaten to destroy the body politic, Leviathan itself, and return us to the state of war. This new edition reproduces the first printed text, retaining the original punctuation but modernizing the spelling. It offers exceptionally thorough and useful annotation, an introduction that guides the reader through the complexities of Hobbes's arguments, and a substantial index.

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It was hard to read wish to read it again. - Goodreads
Most random and irritating writer on philosophy ever. - Goodreads
Hobbes' prose is nasty brutish and long. - Goodreads
Hobbes's writing is incredibly painful to read. - Goodreads
A real page turner!!! - Goodreads

Review: Leviathan

User Review  - Austin Hoffman - Goodreads

I struggled through the first three books of Leviathan. Hobbes's writing is incredibly painful to read. It's very plodding and slow. He seems to take Machiavelli one step further as he develops his ... Read full review

Review: Leviathan

User Review  - Paula Juergens - Goodreads

This is a long and difficult read, at first. One must adjust the mind to the language and grammatical structures of the day. This is a highly educational book if one cares to know where many of our societal constructs and philosophical ideas had come from. This is a book for the ages. Read full review

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About the author (1996)

John Gaskin is Professor, Chair, and Fellow of Trinity College, Dublin. He is the editor of Hobbes and Hume in World's Classics.

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