Thoreau'S Essay On The Duty Of Civil Disobedience.

Thoreau'S Essay On The Duty Of Civil Disobedience.-87
A stereotyped but unconscious despair is concealed even under what are called the games and amusements of mankind.There is no play in them, for this comes after work. What is called resignation is confirmed desperation.

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The best thing a person of means can do, he writes, is “to endeavor to carry out those schemes which he entertained when he was poor.” Or, presumably, if one has never been so, to follow the poors' lead.

The paradox of Thoreau’s assertion that the least powerful present the greatest threat to the State resolves in his recognition that the State’s power rests not in its appeal to “sense, intellectual or moral” but in its “superior physical strength.” By simply refusing to yield to threats, anyone---even ordinary, powerless people---can deny the government’s authority, “until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived.” Read Thoreau’s complete essay, “Civil Disobedience,” here.

The first of these is a ridiculous notion; the second contradicted and supported alternately throughout the essay so that one cannot be sure of what Although it may be true that the government exists only to sustain the military and our country's major industry, without them, this fine country would be in economical and physical ruins.

He doesn't like our government, but his ideas for it, if carried out, would create chaos and anarchy.

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History is rife with examples of oppressive governments. But I see no moral reason to condemn people for fighting injustice, provided their cause itself is just.

The present is rife with examples of oppressive governments. The question that presents itself to any opposition is what is to be done? Neither, of course, did Henry David Thoreau, author of the 1849 essay “Civil Disobedience,” a document that every student of Political Philosophy 101 knows as an ur-text of modern democratic protest movements.

few individuals.” And yet---despite these radical positions---Thoreau has been enshrined in the history of political thought both for his radical tactics and his defense of preserving government, for the present.

“To speak practically and as a citizen,” he wrote, “unlike those who call themselves no-government men, I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government.” He does not go to great lengths, as classical philosophers were wont, to define the ideal government. But as to what constitutes injustice, Thoreau is clear: When the friction comes to have its machine, and oppression and robbery are organized, I say, let us not have such a machine any longer.


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