Strauss and Skinner as Readers of Hobbes’s Theory of the State
Strauss and Skinner are concerned with different concepts in Hobbes’s theory of the state. Whereas Strauss argues that Hobbes’s theory of the state emerges out of his struggle between monarchy and democracy, Skinner focuses on Hobbes’s theories of the person of the state, attributed action, and representation. I will argue that their different readings stem from their philosophical-political projects. Whereas Strauss believes Hobbes developed his political philosophy generally and his theory of the state in particular against the ancient and Christian traditions, Skinner claims that it was theorized against the republican tradition. In other words, for both Strauss and Skinner, Hobbes is a foil for their own political positions.
Faculteit der Filosofie, Theologie en Religiewetenschappen