Xist Publishing is a digital-first publisher. Xist Publishing creates books for the touchscreen generation and is dedicated to helping everyone develop a lifetime love of reading, no matter what form it takes
Written during the chaos of the English Civil War, Thomas Hobbes' Leviathan asks how, in a world of violence and horror, can we stop ourselves from descending into anarchy? Hobbes' case for a 'common-wealth' under a powerful sovereign - or 'Leviathan' - to enforce security and the rule of law, shocked his contemporaries, and his book was publicly burnt for sedition the moment it was published. But his penetrating work of political philosophy - now fully revised and with a new introduction for this edition - opened up questions about the nature of statecraft and society that influenced governments across the world.
Edited with a new introduction by Christopher Brooke
In his insightful and substantial Introduction, Stephen Holmes examines the major themes and implications of Behemoth in Hobbes's system of thought. Holmes notes that a fresh consideration of Behemoth dispels persistent misreadings of Hobbes, including the idea that man is motivated solely by a desire for self-preservation. Behemoth, which is cast as a series of dialogues between a teacher and his pupil, locates the principal cause of the Civil War less in economic interests than in the stubborn irrationality of key actors. It also shows more vividly than any of Hobbe's other works the importance of religion in his theories of human nature and behavior.
Written during the English Civil War (1642–1651), Leviathan argues for a social contract and rule by an absolute sovereign. Hobbes wrote that civil war and situations identified with a state of nature and the famous motto Bellum omnium contra omnes ("the war of all against all") could only be averted by strong central government.