of "social contract" was formed among men, in order to secure their liberty. This,they argue, was the true origin of society. Therefore it is also the
true origin of power
consent of the
The implications of these ideaswere to be enormous.Where Locke is held dear is in the conclusion he draws from the aboveargument. Unlike Hobbes, he argued that if a society is based on popular consent,the citizenry had the right to change the government if power is usurped by thoseentrusted to govern. Locke, in effect, was the first theoretician to argue for theunequivocal
of revolution by the people if those in a position of powerabused it. This argument was in and of itself revolutionary in 17th centuryEngland -- so much so that Locke spent years of his life exiled from the landwhere he was born, to the only liberal bastion of the time, the Netherlands.
originally was considered such a seditious document that even afterLocke finished his exile and returned to England, he would deny almost to hisdeath his authorship of the work. Dunn elaborates, "Locke remained, however, notmerely unwilling to disclose his authorship of the . . .
, but morethan a little hysterical when friends incautiously or inadvertently threatened todisclose it for him" (Dunn, 1984, pp. 14).Today, all representative democracies owe Locke a great debt. Lauded as the"father of Liberalism" -- that political doctrine that intertwines representativedemocracy, individual liberty and a free-market economic system as the basis forsociety -- Locke's influence on today's world, while frequently under estimated,has been tremendous. Cranston explains,Locke was many other things -- economist, diplomatist, theologian,traveler, scientist, physician, pedagogue as well as philosopher . . . .Our modern Western world has been made by scientists, merchants,statesmen, industrialists; Locke was the first philosopher to expound