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My understanding of the historiography is that Moism died out in China and only recovered more recently, so it's unlikely that Ricci would have transmitted it to Europe. But I could be wrong.

Stephen Turner

Im puzzled by the reference to rights and natural law. There are no individual rights in the passage, just powers to command. The reasoning is collectivist, not individual. Is a "special volition" a contract? Sounds more like the will theory of law-- also concerned with the sources of power, not individuals and their rights, which would be derivative and not fundamental.

Eric Schliesser

Thank you for your response, Stephen. Even so, I am puzzled by your puzzlement.
So, first, according to most interpretations that I am familiar with Suárez is a natural law theorist.
Second, it is true there are no individual rights in the passage. This is why I write in the post above, "in the second kind of social contract there is also no talk of rights being transferred (so (iv) is absent)." (This is why I am puzzled by your puzzlement.)
Third, part of the confusion here may be that some people (you?) stipulatively assume that a social contract must involve a theory of rights. I reject that assumption.
Fourth, others insist (as you do) that a social contract must be (in some sense) individual (iii)--and indeed Suárez nor Mo accepts that. But, again, this strikes me as too limited a perspective.
Fifth, what's key I think is not if the contract involves rights or not but if it involves consent or not. But if you think the second tradition should not be thought contractarian at all, then we are just fighting over words.:)

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Here's a link to my past blogging (and discussions involving me) at: New APPS.


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