Humanities
Los Angeles Pierce College Jean Bodin Philosophy Research Paper

Los Angeles Pierce College

Question Description

I need help with a Political Science question. All explanations and answers will be used to help me learn.

Each student will write a paper on a western political theorist of the student's choice that is in the text book but not covered in class (not on the course outline). The paper will evaluate the selected theorist’s influence on the present, biographical information about the theorist will be limited to less than a page. The paper will focus on the theory not the person. Outside research is required for this paper a minimum of two outside sources are required not including the text book. Dictionaries and encyclopedias are good starting places but are not considered academically acceptable sources.

Paper Format and Expectations:

Section 1. Student’s must choose a theorist not covered in the course but is in the text book and apply their theory to modern society. In the first section of the paper students should describe the theorist’s metaphysics, a broad overview of the theory, and a brief biography--if appropriate. In addition this section should address the following questions why is the theory unique, and why is it important. This section should be about 2-3pages.

Section 2. Detailed discussion of the theorist’s theory, argument and conclusions. The discussion of the theory should be a detailed examination of one aspect of the theory that is applied to modern society. The discussionshould include critiques of the theory. This section should be the bulk of the paper roughly 3-4 pages in length.

Section 3. Apply the theory discussed to modern society. Discuss how the theory is relevant today. Several examples of how the theory is relevant to modern society should be explored. You can argue how the theory is misapplied today as well. Sources should be used to support why the theory is relevant. This section of the paper should be 2 pages in length.

Student has agreed that all tutoring, explanations, and answers provided by the tutor will be used to help in the learning process and in accordance with Studypool's honor code & terms of service.

Final Answer

Attached.

Running Head: JEAN BODIN PHILOSOPHY

Jean Bodin Philosophy
The Theory of Sovereignty
Name
Instructor
Institutional Affiliation
Date

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JEAN BODIN PHILOSOPHY
Section 1
Introduction

Jean Bodin was one of the prominent political philosophers and humanist theorists of the
sixteenth century. His legacy is primarily based on his theory of sovereignty, which is also
formulated in the Six Books of the Commonwealth. He is best known as one of the political
philosophers who pioneered the principle of political sovereignty, which has been in use until
today (Franklin, 1963). He firmly believed that peace could be restored if the sovereign prince
was given absolute and indivisible power of the state. In most of his writings, he believed that
different religions could coexist within the commonwealth. He is also considered one of the first
people to oppose slavery.
Bodin was a humanist theorist, and his work majorly dealt with a variety of topics such as
natural philosophy and religion, political economy, education, and historical methodology.
During his time, his religious beliefs never coincided with the religion of his time. According to
him, natural philosophy and religion were correlated, and he also sought to bring reform to the
French judicial system (Franklin, 1963). During his time, he also came with a formulation of the
theory of money although he held several superstitious beliefs particularly about the existence of
demons and angels. He is considered the father of sovereignty as a theory of sovereignty
continues to be used even today.
Background information about the theorist
Jean Bodin was born between June 1529 and June 1530. He was born from a wealthy
father, Guillaume Bodin who was a master tailor and mother Catherine Dutertre. During his
time, he studied in his home town, and while he was young, he undertook the habit of

JEAN BODIN PHILOSOPHY

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Carmelites, although he lived in the monastery of Notre-Dames-des-Carmes. In 1545, Bodin
traveled to Paris, where he got an opportunity to study philosophy. During his two year stay in
Paris, he got a rich intellectual and spiritual experience (Blair, 1992). In 1550, he got an
opportunity to study law at the University of Toulouse under the guidance of Arnaud du Ferrier.
Jean Bodin Theory of absolute and undivided sovereignty
Bodin developed one of the most prominent theories that are still applicable today. The
theory of sovereignty was developed in response to several problems during Bodin’s time. He
was born at a time when there was great religious turmoil, particularly between Catholics and
Huguenots. In his response to the then ongoing social problems, he developed this theory to
establish the independence of sovereign states from the claims of overlordship especially by the
Holy Roman Empire and the papacy. Bodin was more of a nationalist who was concerned about
sovereign powers and having a master with sovereign powers. His theory of sovereignty was
contrary to the medieval view that king rules under the law. However, to him, this notion was out
of context since the excessive powers of the kings were not subject to divine natural law.
Following the medieval view, monarchs subject to the law were only kings, while those who
were not subject to law were tyrants.
An essential factor of the theory of sovereignty is its degree of absoluteness. In other
words, sovereign power has absolute authority and power and no law or policy are reserved as
being outside of its control. The concept or theory has since been used to refer to the state’s
absolute power and authority. Within the political context, sovereignty is the distinguishing
characteristic of a nation. No nation can exist without a sovereign power. In a nutshell,

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JEAN BODIN PHILOSOPHY
sovereignty is an essential and unique concept since it is the right of a state to have absolute and

unlimited power. This power can either be legal or political or exist within territorial boundaries.
Section 2
The theoretical concept of sovereignty
The theorist Jean Bodin founded the modern concept of sovereignty. It owes more on this
theorist than it does to any other philosopher. Bodin founded the theory based on the state having
the supreme power to make laws without the consent of any additional power (Nagan & Haddad,
2011). The sovereignty of countries that has been a widely exercised concept was the work of
Bodin and entailed an absolute and perpetual power of the state, which forms the most
significant power of command. The people have a supreme authority to grant the sovereign
power to an individual who will then exercise these powers on their behalf.
In the United States, for example, the citizens elect the president who is supposed to be in
charge of the highest office. The president, in this case, is the trustee of this sovereign authority.
This is an example of absolute power and influence being granted to one individual through the
office of the presidency (Nagan & Haddad, 2011). The president, as the trustee of the sovereign
power of the state, is expected to remain accountable to the people who have granted him the
powers since the people have the authority to revoke the sovereign powers granted to the
president at any time. However, the powers granted to the president by the people may not be
considered as sovereign powers according to Bodin. Sovereign powers are those powers with no
limitations such as the powers of the prince who has unlimited authority to control unlike the
president with limited authority to control. Because a prince may not be bounded by the laws of
his predecessors, and may also not be subject to his doctrines, in this case, the prince has

JEAN BODIN PHILOSOPHY

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sovereign powers which are perpetually based on the definition of sovereignty (Nagan &
Haddad, 2011).
According to Bodin, the theory of sovereignty is founded on various premises, and these
premises also form the foundation of criticism of this theory. These premises include the fact that
it is necessary that in the theory of sovereignty, there shou...

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