Gulnara Bayazitova 1
  • 1 University of Tyumen, Volodarskogo str., 6, Tyumen, Russian Federation 625003

On the Concepts of the “Family” and the “Household” in the Political Theory of Jean Bodin

2019, vol. 18, No. 4, pp. 130–148 [issue contents]
The article examines the tradition of formation of the concepts “family” (famille) and “household” (ménage) in the political theory of the French lawyer, Jean Bodin. The article looks into different editions of Six Books of the Commonwealthto explore the connotations of the key concepts and the meaning that Bodin ascribed to them. As secondary sources, Bodin uses the works by Xenophon, Aristotle, Apuleus, and Marcus Junianus Justin, as well as the Corpus Juris Civilis. Bodin examines three different traditions, those of Ancient Greece, Ancient Hebrew, and Ancient Rome. Each of these traditions has its own history of the concepts of the “family” and of the “household”. Bodin refers to ancient traditions for polemics, but eventually offers his own understanding, not only of the concepts of “famille” and “ménage”, but also of the term «République», defined as the Republic, a term that (with some reservations) refers to the modern notion of state. The very fact that these concepts are being used signifies the division of the political space into the spheres of the private and the public. Furthermore, the concepts of the “family” and of the “household” are key to understand the essence of sovereignty as the supreme authority in the Republic. The author concludes that the difference between Bodin’s concepts of the “family” and the “household” lies not only in the possession of property and its legal manifestation, but also in the fact that the “household” is seen by Bodin as the basis of the Republic, the first step in the system of subordination to the authority.
Citation: Bayazitova G. (2019) O ponyatiyakh «sem'ya» i «domokhozyaystvo» v politicheskoy teorii Zhana Bodena [On the Concepts of the “Family” and the “Household” in the Political Theory of Jean Bodin]. The Russian Sociological Review, vol. 18, no 4, pp. 130-148 (in Russian)
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