Evgeniy Karchagin 1
  • 1 Volgograd State Technical University, Akademicheskaya str., 1, Volgograd, Russian Federation 400074

How Many Types of Justice are in Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan?

2022, vol. 21, No. 1, pp. 87–108 [issue contents]
The article examines the problem of the multiplicity of justice in Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes. The Leviathan combines at least two understandings of justice; the civil one is connected with the keeping of covenants, while the natural one is a law of nature. We demonstrate that monistic views reducing civil justice to natural justice or natural justice to civil justice are as inadequately justified as denying justice at all. Hobbes uses two terms for justice, justice and equity. The latter is natural and binds the sovereign, while the former is created by the sovereign so that the sovereign is not accountable to the principle of justice. The natural poly-semantism of justice postulated in Leviathan finds its solution in the power of the sovereign, which sets the limits of semantic uncertainty and teaches his subjects what justice is. The case of Hobbes’ Foole shows that any definition of justice that goes against the definition of the sovereign will be interpreted as unacceptable. At the same time, there is a possibility for a number of other types of justice. Due to the introduction of the global and eschatological contexts, we get two types of natural justice (pre-civil and international), four types of civil justice (two local-civil and two global-civil), and one global theological (eschatological) justice. This number of conceptions can be considered in a contensive unity, because of the theological foundation of theorizing about justice in Leviathan due to the coincidence of natural and divine laws and the understanding of the commonwealth as a mortal God.
Citation: Karchagin E. (2022) Skol'ko vidov spravedlivosti v «Leviafane» Tomasa Gobbsa? [How Many Types of Justice are in Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan?]. The Russian Sociological Review, vol. 21, no 1, pp. 87-108 (in Russian)
The Russian Sociological Review
Office A-205
21/4 Staraya Basmannaya Ulitsa, Building 1
Deputy Editor: Marina Pugacheva
Rambler's Top100 rss