Hobbes on Civil Association

Michael Oakeshott, Hobbes on Civil Association. Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1975.

This book consists of Oakeshott’s four principal essays on Hobbes and on the nature of civil association as it pertains to ordered liberty. The essays are:

  • “Introduction to Leviathan” (1946)
  • “The Moral Life in the Writings of Thomas Hobbes” (1960)
  • “Dr. Leo Strauss on Hobbes” (1937)
  • “Leviathan: A Myth” (1947)

“The themes Oakeshott stresses in his interpretation of Hobbes are . . . skepticism about the role of reason in politics, allegiance to the morality of individuality as opposed to any sort of collectivism, and the principle of a noninstrumental, nonpurposive mode of political association, namely, civil association.” Paul Franco, forward to Hobbes on Civil Association.