The Plan for Perpetual Peace, On the Government of Poland, and Other Writings on History and Politics (Collected Writings of Rousseau)
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These abridgements of The Plan for Perpetual Peace (published 1761), On the Government of Poland (1771–1772), and Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s other writings on history and politics represent his considerations of the practical applications of key principles developed in his best-known theoretical writings. In this latest volume in the classic series, Rousseau reflects on projects for a European union; the possibilities for governmental reform for France, including the polysynody experiment; international relations; and the establishment of governments for Poland and Corsica, both recently liberated from foreign oppression. Taken together, these works offer definitive insights into Rousseau’s decidedly nonutopian thoughts on cosmopolitanism and nationalism, and on the theory and practice of politics.
whether promises torn by force 76 Fragments on War and in order to avoid death are obligatory in the state of freedom, and whether all those which the prisoner makes to his master in that state can signify anything but this. I engage myself to obey you for as long as, being the stronger, you do not make an attempt on my life. There is more. Let someone tell me which ought to prevail, solemn and irrevocable engagements taken with the fatherland in full freedom or those which fear of death make
and tasks are distributed with more equity and reason, when the interest of the State and Prince are better listened to in deliberations, the better expedited business and more honored merit must necessarily arouse in the hearts of the People that love of the Fatherland which is the most powerful spring of a wise government and which is never extinguished in Citizens except by the fault of the Leaders. Such are the necessary eVects of a form of government that forces private interest to yield to
members there to be better protectors against the violence of the others than under the vizierate against a single man who can do everything, or against a demivizier who has agreed with all his colleagues to refer to each of them the judgment of complaints brought against him. The State will suVer less from nonage, weakness, or senility of the Prince. There will never be a minister powerful enough to become a threat to his master, if he is of high birth, or to push aside and displease the Great
have all the wealth in the world, if you do not have anything with which to nourish yourself you are dependent on others. Your neighbors can give your money whatever value they please because they can wait; but the bread that we need has an indisputable value for us and in every sort of commerce it is always the least hurried person who gives the law to the other. I admit that in a system of ﬁnance, it would be necessary to operate in accordance with other views; everything depends on the ﬁnal
Cantons, they took possession of the ecclesiastical tithes and these tithes upon which they maintain their clergy decently have made up the principal revenue of the State. I do not say that the Corsicans ought to touch the revenues of the Church, God forbid! but I believe that the people will not be extremely vexed if the State asks them for as much as the clergy—already suYciently endowed with estates of land—ask them. The basis of this tax will be [established] without diYculty, without trouble