The Social Contract Quotes

20 of the best book quotes from The Social Contract
  1. #1
    “In any case, frequent punishments are a sign of weakness or slackness in the government. There is no man so bad that he cannot be made good for something. No man should be put to death, even as an example, if he can be left to live without danger to society.”
  2. #2
    “The sovereign, having no force other than the legislative power, acts only by means of the laws.”
  3. #3
    “In the purely civil profession of faith...the Sovereign should fix the social sentiments.”
  4. #4
    “As soon as ay man says of the affairs of he State “What does it matter to me?” the State may be given up for lost.”
  5. #5
    “In truth, laws are always useful to those with possessions and harmful to those who have nothing; from which it follows that the social state is advantageous to men only when all possess something and none has too much.”
  6. #6
    ″ respect of riches, no citizen shall ever be wealthy enough to buy another, and none poor enough to be forced to sell himself.”
  1. #7
    “It is easier to conquer than to administer. With enough leverage, a finger could overturn the world; but to support the world, one must have the shoulders of Hercules.”
  2. #8
    “The word ‘slavery’ and ‘right’ are contradictory, they cancel each other out. Whether as between one man and another, or between one man and a whole people, it would always be absurd to say: “I hereby make a covenant with you which is wholly at your expense and wholly to my advantage; I will respect it so long as I please and you shall respect it as long as I wish.”
  3. #9
    “The sovereign, merely by virtue of what it is, is always what it should be.”
  4. #10
    “If then the people promises simply to obey [it] loses what makes it a people.”
  5. #11
    “A born king is a very rare being.”
  6. #12
    “Each member of community gives himself to it, at the moment of its foundation.”

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  1. #13
    “Man is born free; and everywhere he is in chains.”
  2. #14
    “When the whole people decrees for the whole people, it is considering only itself.
  3. #15
    “When citizens would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall.”
  4. #16
    “The strongest is never strong enough to be always the master, unless he transforms that strength into right.”
  5. #17
    “There is often a great difference between the will of all and general will.”
  6. #18
    “The moment the people is legitimately assembled as a sovereign body, the jurisdiction of the government wholly lapses.”
  7. #19
    “Each of us puts his person...under the supreme direction of the general will.”
  8. #20
    “To renounce liberty is to renounce being a man, to surrender the rights [and duties] of humanity.”
Book Topics › government
Children's Books About Government