AIOU Solved Assignments 2 Code 4669 Autumn & Spring 2023

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Aiou Solved Assignments code M.Sc 4669 Autumn & Spring 2023 assignments 1 and 2  Course: Social Theory–I (4669) spring 2023. aiou past papers

AIOU Solved Assignments 2 Code 4669 Autumn & Spring 2023

Course: Social Theory–I (4669)
Semester: Autumn & Spring 2023

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Level: M. Sc (Pak Studies)

Q. 1     What was the new art of the statesman according to Aristotle? Discuss in detail the new art of statesman and its difference from the ideas of Aristotle propounded earlier.

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Aristotle (384-323 BC.) was one of the greatest thinkers of antiquity. His opinions had an important effect in the formation of Ancient Greek philosophy. His contributions to the development of philosophical thought also had an enormous influence in the forming of contemporary thought. His art philosophy on the other hand played an efficient part in the historical development of aesthetics.

 He was born in the city of Stagira in Macedonia. He entered Plato’s Academy (Akademia) at the age of eighteen and became one of his pupils. After Plato died, he went to the city of Assos (Behramkale) and joined a group of Platonists. Then he went to Lesbos (Midilli) and studied zoology with Theophrastus who would be his successor. He was invited to Pella by Philip to educate Alexander in 343-342 BC. When he came back to Athens in 335 BC. he found his school in the sacred grove dedicated to Apollo Lycius and muses. His school was known as “Lyceum” but it was also named “Peripatetics” for he was lecturing walking up and down. He remained in Athens for thirteen years. After Alexander died and anti-Macedonian ideas increased, he went to Chalcis on Euboea island (in Aegean sea) and died there in 323 BC.

He was the originator of many lines of research unknown before him such as logic, grammar, rhetoric, literary criticism, natural history, physiology, psychology and history of philosophy. It is proper to say that he was under the influence of Plato in the first period of his literary activity. The book known as “On The Soul” was from this period. As well as  “Protrepticus” -a letter addressed to Themison, the king of Cyprus-, the oldest fragments of  “Organon”, “Physics” and “De Anima (book R)” were written in this period too.

In the second era of his activity Aristotle had a critical attitude against Plato’s doctrines. The books such as “On The Philosophy”, “Metaphysics (a preliminary study)”, “Eudemian Ethics”, “Politics (2., 3., 7., 8. books)” and “De Caelo” were the works of this era.

In the third period of his literary activity in Lyceum, Aristotle appeared as an observer and scientist. He studied nature and history in detail. In fact there was a classification study at a certain level for logical goals in Plato’s Academy. But the continual and systematic study developed by Aristotle in Lyceum made the former one unimportant. This logical study method represented something new in Greek world. “The Categories”, “De Interpretatione”, “Analytica Priora”, “Analytica Posteriora”, “Topica”, “Sophisms”, “Metaphysics”, “Physics”, “Meteorologica”, “Animal History”, “Magna Moralia”, “Nicomachean Ethics”, “Politics (1., 4., 5., 6. books), “Rhetoric” and “Poetics” were the works of this period .           

Aristotle’s writings and library which he bequeathed to Theophrastus were brought to Athens in 100 BC. by Apellicon of Teos (S??ac?k), a bibliophile. He tried to restore them. When Athens was conquered by the Romans, they were brought to Rome and copied by Tyrannion, the grammarian. Afterwards Andronicus of Rhodes (Rodos), the Peripatetic philosopher edited them on the basis of these copies .               

The Place Of Art In Aristotelian Thought

“Poetics” is the first source we must turn to to understand Aristotle’s ideas on art. But as it is about literature -especially poetry- it is not sufficient to comprehend his art philosophy as a whole. Yet there are so many different illustrations of art in his other books that these may be considered as the clues to grasp Aristotelian general art philosophy. Even if he gave these examples to make his ideas clear, we may perceive by means of them the way he interpreted art and also it’s place in his doctrine.

According to Aristotle; the human spirit  “…attains the truth by art, science, sensibility, wisdom and intellegence…” . Because, beings on earth came into existence for we grasped them. A house existed if it was perceived. A book or another object came into existence as long as it was perceived. Aristotle’s opinion characterized his art philosophy. The beauty concept might have been mentioned when there was an artistic creation or creations. There was a difference between him and Plato at this point. Because according to Plato; the beauty of a work of art might have been discussed when there was the idea of beautiful.

Ancient Greek society in which Aristotle formed his opinions and revealed his ideas created a universe of human shaped (anthropomorphic) gods. These immortals had a great importance in daily life. As well as the temples, the open areas were full with the sculptures of gods. The Greeks would arrange religious ceremonies -sometimes with killing an animal as a sacrifice- to satisfy them. Because the immortals didn’t only reign over the cosmos but also controlled the destinies of every individual and city one by one. For example a god might have hated or cared for a specific mortal. It was even possible for a god to love a mortal and have children with her or him.

According to Aristotle; god is beyond being human shaped. It is simple and bare. It has neither size nor quality. It is pure form. It is perfection, intellect. It is a sublime being. It is not related to the concept of matter . According to him; “…Life is god. Because the act of mind is life and god is act itself. We grasp god as a being that is sempiternal and perfect” . He also criticized the traditional god concept of the society by saying: “…A tradition which remained from the distant ancestors of ours and quotted to the later generations as a legend implied that the first substances were gods and also the divine included the whole nature. The rest of the tradition was added later as a legend to persuade the mass and to serve the law and public interest. So gods were given human shape or were represented resembling animals…” .

According to some authorities; the book “Peri Cosmoi” (On The Cosmos) was a work of Aristotle. Actually, it was a letter written to Alexander. Here; Aristotle discussed one of the famous statues of his era while mentioning the sovereign of god over the universe. “…While Pheidias, the sculptor worked on the statue of Athena in Acropolis, he placed his own portrait in the middle of her shield. So he joined the pieces in a way that whoever tried to remove the portrait, he or she would have to tear the sculpture to pieces. The relation between god and the universe is like this. God guarantees the harmony, existence and continuity of the cosmos in this way…” .

The sculpture he discussed was “Athena Parthenos” which Pheidias carved in 440 BC. It was rumored to be gigantic and would stand in the middle -naos- of the temple of Athena in Athens. It’s height was 11.5 meters and was made with golden-ivory (chryselephantine) blend. It was adorned with countless details and the shield which the goddess hold was fulled with the war scenes between Amazons -the female warriors- and giants. In the middle of it, there was the depiction of Pericles, the Athenian statesman along with Pheidias’.In “Protrepticus” (Invitation To Philosophical Thought); Aristotle characterized the nature of artistic activity. This was a letter he wrote to Themison, the king of Cyprus. According to Aristotle; “…It is not nature which imitates man’s ability. This capability imitates nature. And ability exists to support nature and finish which it didn’t complete… If man’s ability imitates nature, it is a fact that the aim of man’s work bases on nature. As order dominates nature, nothing is coincidental. On the contrary, everyhing is intentional. It provides the materialization of the goal which is in a higher degree than all humane arts by excluding the coincidental. Because humane ability imitates nature…”.

According to the tradition which existed since Plato; art was an imitation. Imitation to nature, imitation to reality. Otherwise artistic activity was an action of imitation. But for Plato, artistic activities were worthless. As he was an idealist, he thought that the original of everyting was in the universe of ideas. All realities that were seen on earth were the copies of their originals. So when an artist painted a human portrait or a sculptor carved a lion statue, he reproduced the copy of the original.  According to Plato; even poetry must have been excluded from the state.

However Aristotle thought that; a work of art existed to complete what nature created imititating the perfect without finishing.

“Eudemian Ethics” which Aristotle wrote in the second era of his literary activity consisted of seven books. In the seventh book; he discussed friendship mentioning that only the ones who resembled each other could be friends. “…It seems that; we share the good we possess with the friends. While some share the body pleasure the others share the contemplation of a work of art or philosophy…. “Politics” which explained how a state should have taken shape consisted of eight books. Aristotle wrote the second, third, seventh and the eighth ones in this period .

In the eighth book; he wrote that musical education was an obligation for the young. “… There are resemblances to actual -of anger, gentleness, courage, moderateness and the opposites of them as well as the whole ethical qualities- in rhythms and melodies. That is why the music we listen to make a sentimental alteration on us. Feeling pleasure or pain toward the things that resemble to actual is very similar to feeling the same way in facing the actual itself. I mean if a man has the pleasure of looking at a statue, he will have the same pleasure of gazing at it’s original. It is true that things that are perceived, touched or tasted have no resemblance to spiritual quailities. But music has moral characteristics. The melodies we hear represent them. People who hear the Mycsolydian mode feel grief. While the tender ones make them feel relieved,  the Doric one creates a moderate feeling. Yet the Phrygian mode is exciting. All these show that music has the power of creating specific feelings. So it is obvious that the young must have a musical education and they should be educated…”. Aristotle researched the topics such as ontology, theology and classification of sciences in “Metaphysics” which consisted of fourteen books. They were seperated from one another with the Greek letters or numbers. Book A, Book B, Book K 1.-8., Book M 9.-10. and Book N were formed in the second period of his studies . It is probable that; Aristotle named his book “Peri Tes Protes Philosophias” (The First Philosophy). “Metaphysics” (meta ta physica) was used by Andronicus, his first publisher .

Solved AIOU Assignments Code 4669 Autumn & Spring 2023

Q. 2     The physiological principle behind all behavior is self-preservation, and self-preservation means just the continuance of individual biological existence. Good is what conduces to this end and evil what has the opposite effect.’ Discuss this statement in the light of Hobbes’ idea of self-preservation?

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Thomas Hobbes: social contract

In his account of human psychology and the human condition, Hobbes identifies a first law of nature: “by which a man is forbidden to do that which is destructive of his life, or taketh away the means of preserving the same, and to omit that by which he thinketh it may be best preserved.” [Leviathan, Ch. VI] Noting that self-preservation is rationally sought by communal agreement with others, he derives a second law of nature; “From this fundamental law of nature, by which men are commanded to endeavour peace, is derived this second law: that a man be willing, when others are so too, as far forth as for peace and defence of himself he shall think it necessary, to lay down this right to all things; and be contented with so much liberty against other men as he would allow other men against himself. For as long as every man holdeth this right, of doing anything he liketh; so long are all men in the condition of war. But if other men will not lay down their right, as well as he, then there is no reason for anyone to divest himself of his: for that were to expose himself to prey, which no man is bound to, rather than to dispose himself to peace. This is that law of the gospel: Whatsoever you require that others should do to you, that do ye to them.” [Leviathan, Ch. VI]

You might recognize this law as a version of the Golden Rule. You have probably encountered statements of the Golden Rule in many situations. Have you ever been given a sound argument for that rule? Such is Hobbes’ commitment to systematic philosophical reasoning, that he will not merely instate a principle that is accepted by many. Rather he provides a reasoned basis for accordance with this principle.

Having concluded that it is natural and rational for people to give up some liberty in order to gain security of selfpreservation, Hobbes develops a conception of what forms of social organization and political system are consistent with those aims. The condition in which people give up some individual liberty in exchange for some common security is the Social Contract. Hobbes defines contract as “the mutual transferring of right.” In the state of nature, everyone has the right to everything – there are no limits to the right of natural liberty. The social contract is the agreement by which individuals mutually transfer their natural right. In other words, I give up my natural right to steal your food because you give up your natural right to steal mine. In place of the natural right we have created a limited right; in this case the right of property. Hobbes notes that we do not make these agreements explicitly because we are born into a civil society with laws and conventions (i.e. contracts) already in place. It is by performing the thought experiment regarding the state of nature and following the chain of reasoning Hobbes put before us that we can see the foundations of our commitment to civil law.

One matter that Hobbes’ investigation allows is the examination of governments for the purpose of determining their legitimacy. The purpose of a government is enforce law and serve the common protection. Wherever the government turns to favor the strong over the weak, one might way that the government has exceeded its legitimate function. In Hobbes’ time the rulers claimed their authority to rule by virtue of divine right. God made them King and anyone who questioned the authority of the King was challenging God. Hobbes made some powerful enemies by doing just that. Even though he supported the monarchy as the legitimate government, his philosophy clearly establishes the right of the monarch on the grounds of reasoned principle, rather than divine right. Hobbes secularized politics which led to an increasing demand for accountability of rulers to the people. The impact of this development on contemporary life is profound.

One of Hobbes’ enduring images is that of the artificial man. He describes the State (a political entity, e.g. anation) on the model of an individual human body.”that great LEVIATHAN called a COMMONWEALTH, orSTATE (in Latin, CIVITAS), which is but an artificial man,though of greater stature and strength than the natural, forwhose protection and defence it was intended; and in whichthe sovereignty is an artificial soul, as giving life and motionto the whole body; the magistrates and other officers ofjudicature and execution, artificial joints; reward and (by whichfastened tothe seat ofthe sovereignty,every jointand memberis moved to perform hisduty) are thenerves, thatdo the samein the bodynatural; thewealth andriches of allthe particularmembers arethe strength;salus populi(the people’ssafety) itsbusiness; counsellors, by whom all things needful for it toknow are suggested unto it, are the memory; equity and laws,an artificial reason and will; concord, health; sedition,sickness; and civil war, death.” solved assignments code 4669.

The above picture is from the frontpeice of the 1660 edition of Hobbes’ Leviathan. Note that the figure of the State/Ruler is composed of citizens, territory, and commerce. Now when you hear the term “body politic” you will know where it comes from. Hobbes’ has an important message for us today. Even though governmental structures have changed radically and political philosophies operate on very different bases, it is still common to hear proposals that we must give up liberty for security. Such proposals are directly related to Hobbes’ ideas. Before readily accepting or rejecting such proposals, it is wise to consider the source. Study Hobbes to find out the roots and branches of such political proposals.

AIOU Solved Assignments Code 4669 Autumn & Spring 2023

Q. 3     ‘A church therefore is a corporation. Like any corporation it must have a head and the head is the sovereign.’ Critically analyze the views of Hobbes on the relations between the state and the church in the light of the given statement?


Hobbes’s views on church–state relations go well beyond Erastianism. Rather than claiming that the state holds supremacy over the church, Hobbes argued that church and state are identical in Christian commonwealths. This chapter shows that Hobbes advanced two distinct arguments for the church–state identity thesis over time. Both arguments are of considerable interest. The argument found in De Cive explains how the sovereign unifies a multitude of Christians into one personified church—without, intriguingly, any appeal to representation. Leviathan’s argument is premised on the sovereign’s authorized representation of Christian subjects. Authorization explains why, from Leviathan onwards, full sacerdotal powers are ex officioattributed to the sovereign. In Hobbes’s mature theory, every clerical power, including baptism and consecration, derives from the sovereign—now labelled ‘the Supreme Pastor’. Developments in Hobbes’s account of church personation thus explain Leviathan’s theocratic turn.

Unlike Locke, Hobbes seeks to embrace religion. But it is a deadly embrace

Locke advocates the separation of church and state that has become engrained in our conception of a secular republic: “I esteem it above all things necessary to distinguish exactly the business of civil government from that of religion, and to settle the just bounds that lie between the one and the other.” However, there is no room for such separation in Hobbesian political theory: “Temporal and spiritual government, are but two words, brought into the world, to make men see double, and mistake their lawful sovereign.” The embrace of the Leviathan must encompass everything in its domain, including religion. But in this temporal clutch religion cannot breath as a spiritual practice. This may be just as well for Hobbes, but Locke insists on carving out of space of religious freedom. To understand this divergence we must probe the metaphysical and social theoretical foundations of their political theories and tease out the normative commitments entailed therein. Locke takes seriously the place of God and spiritual practice in human existence, leading him ineluctably to religious freedom at the expense of a realistic account of the political implications of religious practice. Whereas Hobbes takes seriously religion as a social force and, having little use for it as a path to salvation, perceives religious pluralism as a threat to the prime objective of his political theory: social order.

The tension between these seminal political philosophers illuminates the importance of ontological and epistemological foundations of political theory: what is the nature of our existence and what/how can we know? Divergent conceptions of God vis-à-vis the human condition lead here to opposite conclusions regarding the role of religion in society vis-à-vis the state. In A Letter Concerning Toleration, Locke takes for granted a good deal of Christian dogma. He provides a liberal gloss, insisting that the true mark of Christianity is “charity, meekness, and good-will in general towards all mankind, even to those that are not Christians.” But the fundamental ontology of Christian theology remains in place as a frame for his theory and the scriptures persist as a source of knowledge about the nature of the world with which political principles must contend:

Every man has an immortal soul, capable of eternal happiness or misery; whole happiness depending upon his believing and doing those things in this life, which are necessary to the obtaining of God’s favour, and are prescribed by God to that end: it follows from thence, first, that the observance of these things is the highest obligation that lies upon mankind, and that our utmost care, application, and diligence, ought to be exercised in the search and performance of them; because there is nothing in this world that is of any consideration in comparison with eternity.

Any political theory so premised must make space for genuine religion, that is, spiritual practice most likely to lead to the salvation of human souls. With eternal happiness or misery putatively at stake, there can be little room for compromise with political prerogatives of the temporal domain. The security of the state is surely desirable, but not at the expense of eternal damnation of its subjects.  Salvation is too important to be left to the sovereign. solved assignments code 4669,

Contrast this with Hobbes’s worldview which literally leaves no room for an immaterial soul. His work in natural philosophy relentlessly sought to disprove the existence of any immaterial substances. As for ‘God,’ he leaves us guessing, but leaves the widest possible latitude for the signifier. Notably he writes:

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When we say any thing is infinite, we signify only that we are not able to conceive the ends and bounds of the thing named, having no conception of the thing, but of our own inability. And therefore the name of God is used, not to make us conceive him (for he is incomprehensible, and his greatnesse, and power are unconceivable), but that we may honour him.

Given God as the unconceivable, Hobbes strictly avoids in his argumentation premises that depend on some knowledge of God obtained by means other than reason. Hobbes gives an account rooted in the nature and capacities of man and religious references are typically reduced to those terms. In the first page the creative power of God is transferred to men who willfully create the artificial body of the state that is the Leviathan. The best prophet he says “naturally is the best guesser.” His account of language which is central to his notion of right philosophy begins with mention of God’s gift of words to Adam, but then roots the significance of human communication in our ability to make language our own without restriction to God-given semantics. “The Scripture was written to shew unto men the kingdom of God, and to prepare their minds to become his obedient subjects, leaving the world and the philosophy thereof to the disputation of men for the exercising of their natural reason.” With respect to superstitions such as belief in demons, Hobbes “can imagine no reason but that which is common to all men, namely, the want of curiosity to search natural causes.” And he squarely attacks the Scholastic philosophers for promoting a spiritual ontology of immaterial bodies and spreading absurd notions like “substantial forms,” which in Hobbes eyes, “hath a quality, not only to hide the truth, but also to make men think they have it, and desist from further search.”

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As for the authoritative meaning of the Scriptures, it can only come about through a chain of men trusting men, because,

…when we believe that the Scriptures are the word of God, having no immediate revelation from God himself, our belief, faith and trust is in the church, whose word we take, and acquiesce therein… So that it is evident that whatsoever we believe upon no other reason than what is drawn from authority of men only and their writings, whether they be sent from God or not, is faith in men only.”

This is essentially to say that religion – as far as one is concerned in the present – has its roots in men only. He does give wide allowance to Christian thought understood in figurative terms compatible with the reality of the natural world as comprehended by reason. As Shapin and Schaffer characterize his view, “Hell and heaven were not places; they were states of mind or conditions of social disorder and order.” For Hobbes, hell was civil war, and his political philosophy aims at humanity’s salvation from that collective fate. [Hint: the solution isn’t Christ-love.] solved assignments code 4669,

The temporal salvation of society presents itself as the imperative of Hobbes’s political theory because of the social theory underlying it. By his account man is essentially selfish and, in a state of nature, at war, “the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” This leads Hobbes to the need for a sovereign power. As the agent of social order and cohesion, the sovereign resolves the otherwise divisive epistemic indeterminacy of God’s will and the path to salvation. For Locke, this same condition of uncertain knowledge necessitates leaving decisions of faith to individuals in voluntary association, for “Neither the right, nor the art of ruling, does necessarily carry along with it the certain knowledge of other things; and least of all of the true religion.” Even if Hobbes were concerned with the ability of the sovereign to save the eternal souls of his subjects, the right of sovereignty comes from the practical ability to secure order, not from some priestly access to unassailable Truth. As U.S. Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson famously and more recently explained: “We are not final because we are infallible, but we are infallible only because we are final.” But whence this right of final judgment? Locke is right that “it appears not that God has ever given any such authority to one man over another, as to compel any one to his religion.” Hobbes would agree that God has not granted such authority to the sovereign: the people have contracted to vest absolute authority and they have done so out of necessity to escape a state of war. Once such power is vested it is absolute and the security of the civil order depends on disabling subversive powers, including religion.

This was far more than a theoretical proposition for Hobbes. Unlike Locke he took seriously the social power of religion – informed by the history of religious conflict, the exercise power of religion over the state, and the specific contribution of religious factions to the English Civil War that historically frames his theoretical project. As Shapin and Schaffer put it, “Double tribute ended in civil war and confusion. This was what would inevitably happen if one allowed authority and power in the state to be fragmented and dispersed among professional groups each claiming its share.”They quote Hobbes in 1656 explaining that he came to write Leviathan because of “considerations of what the ministers before, and in the beginning of civil war, by their preaching and writing did contribute thereunto.”  And in his 1668 work Behemoth, Hobbes lay particular blame for the Civil War on the clergy who had seduced the people, bypassing the sovereignty of the state by “pretending to have a right from God to govern every one in his parish, and their assembly the whole nation.” Later in life, Hobbes turned his critical polemic against the program of experimental science advocated by Boyle because it represented a dual threat to the social order by: (1) undermining natural philosophy as a firm system of knowledge and introducing a framework for dissent in the production of knowledge, and (2) using experiments with air-pumps to support belief in the existence of a vacuum – an incorporeal substance of the sort that the Scholastics had used to buttress priestcraft. As Shapin and Schaffer sum it up, “These were the ontological resources of the enemies of order.”

AIOU Solved Assignments 2 Code 4669 Autumn & Spring 2023

Q.4      Discuss in detail the views of Locke about the individual and the community. What were the effects of circumstances on his views regarding the individual and the community?


The Second Treatise of Government remains a cornerstone of Western political philosophy. Locke’s theory of government based on the sovereignty of the people has been extraordinarily influential since its publication in 1690–the concept of the modern liberal-democratic state is rooted in Locke’s writings.

Locke’s Second Treatise starts with a liberal premise of a community of free, equal individuals, all possessed of natural rights. Since these individuals will want to acquire goods and will come into inevitable conflict, Locke invokes a natural law of morality to govern them before they enter into society. Locke presumes people will understand that, in order to best protect themselves and their property, they must come together into some sort of body politic and agree to adhere to certain standards of behavior. Thus, they relinquish some of their natural rights to enter into a social compact. solved assignments code 4669,

In this civil society, the people submit natural freedoms to the common laws of the society; in return, they receive the protection of the government. By coming together, the people create an executive power to enforce the laws and punish offenders. The people entrust these laws and the executive power with authority. When, either through an abuse of power or an impermissible change, these governing bodies cease to represent the people and instead represent either themselves or some foreign power, the people may–and indeed should–rebel against their government and replace it with one that will remember its trust. This is perhaps the most pressing concern of Locke’s Second Treatise, given his motivation in writing the work (justifying opposition to Charles II) and publishing it (justifying the revolution of King William)–to explain the conditions in which a people has the right to replace one government with another.

Locke links his abstract ideals to a deductive theory of unlimited personal property wholly protected from governmental invention; in fact, in some cases Locke places the sanctity of property over the sanctity of life (since one can relinquish one’s life by engaging in war, but cannot relinquish one’s property, to which others might have ownership rights). This joining of ideas–consensual, limited government based upon natural human rights and dignity, and unlimited personal property, based on those same rights, makes the Second Treatise a perfectly-constructed argument against absolutism and unjust governments. It appeals both to abstract moral notions and to a more grounded view of the self-interest that leads people to form societies and governments.

“Both in practice and in theory, the views which [Locke] advocated were held, for many years to come, by the most vigorous and influential politicians and philosophers.  His political doctrines, with the developments due to Montesquieu, are embedded in the American Constitution, and are seen to be at work whenever there is a dispute between President and Congress.  The British Constitution was based upon his doctrines until about fifty years ago, and so was that which the French adopted in 1871.”—Bertrand Russell, History of Western Philosophy

An Enlightenment thinker, John Locke is probably best known for his idea of natural rights, or the rights of every individual to life, liberty, and property.  The purpose of government, he said, was to protect these rights.  People, he explained, were subject to the law of reason.  This law teaches that people ought not harm one another, nor interfere with other’s health, freedom, or possessions.

Born the son of a country lawyer in 1632, Locke experienced sweeping political changes during his lifetime.  He was just ten years old when his father joined the parliamentary army that opposed Charles I in the English Civil War.  He was seventeen when Charles I was tried for treason, found guilty and executed in 1649.  Just nine years later, Cromwell, who had experimented briefly with republican ideas of government but yielded quickly to military rule, died. solved assignments code 4669,

Given this background, it may not at first seem surprising that one of the starting places in Locke’s philosophy was the rejection of an absolute monarchy by divine right.  Absolute monarchy is the belief that all power within a state rests in the hands of a king or queen; divine right is the idea that the monarch’s power is God given.

Locke attacked the idea of absolute monarchy in his influential Two Treatises of Government.  Locke explained that obedience to a monarch is a form of slavery, and people are not slaves.  Locke also rejected the idea of absolute monarchy even if its power came from the consent of the people.  Instead, he believed that people could not give anyone authority over them for any purpose other than preserving their natural rights.

Locke’s second treatise of government suggests that the majority of individuals give the community the power to preserve each person’s natural rights to life, liberty, and property.  Even though the individual gives this power to the community, the individual still has rights to limit the power of that community.

People put their trust in the government.  As a result, legislative power is for the good of the people and comes from the consent of the people.  According to Locke the people have, “a supreme power to remove or alter the Legislative, when they find the Legislative acts contrary to [that] Trust.”  If the legislature acts against the people’s wishes, they have a right to dissolve it.  Or, in more dramatic terms, they have the right to revolution.

If such a revolution happened, Locke maintained that society would not fall apart.  He believed that the spirit of democracy itself would be more powerful than any government other people might dissolve. Almost one hundred years later, this idea would be tested when the Constitutional Convention met in Philadelphia in 1787. solved assignments code 4669,

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Q.5      Make a critical analysis of Rousseau’s attack on reason. What were his justifications for revolting against reason? Explain with cogent arguments.


Jean-Jacques Rousseau was one of the most influential thinkers during the Enlightenment in eighteenth century Europe. His first major philosophical work, A Discourse on the Sciences and Arts, was the winning response to an essay contest conducted by the Academy of Dijon in 1750. In this work, Rousseau argues that the progression of the sciences and arts has caused the corruption of virtue and morality. This discourse won Rousseau fame and recognition, and it laid much of the philosophical groundwork for a second, longer work, The Discourse on the Origin of Inequality. The second discourse did not win the Academy’s prize, but like the first, it was widely read and further solidified Rousseau’s place as a significant intellectual figure. The central claim of the work is that human beings are basically good by nature, but were corrupted by the complex historical events that resulted in present day civil society.Rousseau’s praise of nature is a theme that continues throughout his later works as well, the most significant of which include his comprehensive work on the philosophy of education, the Emile, and his major work on political philosophy, The Social Contract: both published in 1762. These works caused great controversy in France and were immediately banned by Paris authorities. Rousseau fled France and settled in Switzerland, but he continued to find difficulties with authorities and quarrel with friends. The end of Rousseau’s life was marked in large part by his growing paranoia and his continued attempts to justify his life and his work. This is especially evident in his later books, The ConfessionsThe Reveries of the Solitary Walker, and Rousseau: Judge of Jean-Jacques.

Rousseau greatly influenced Immanuel Kant’s work on ethics. His novel Julie or the New Heloiseimpacted the late eighteenth century’s Romantic Naturalism movement, and his political ideals were championed by leaders of the French Revolution.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau was one of the most influential thinkers during the Enlightenment in eighteenth century Europe. His first major philosophical work, A Discourse on the Sciences and Arts, was the winning response to an essay contest conducted by the Academy of Dijon in 1750. In this work, Rousseau argues that the progression of the sciences and arts has caused the corruption of virtue and morality. This discourse won Rousseau fame and recognition, and it laid much of the philosophical groundwork for a second, longer work, The Discourse on the Origin of Inequality. The second discourse did not win the Academy’s prize, but like the first, it was widely read and further solidified Rousseau’s place as a significant intellectual figure. The central claim of the work is that human beings are basically good by nature, but were corrupted by the complex historical events that resulted in present day civil society.Rousseau’s praise of nature is a theme that continues throughout his later works as well, the most significant of which include his comprehensive work on the philosophy of education, the Emile, and his major work on political philosophy, The Social Contract: both published in 1762. These works caused great controversy in France and were immediately banned by Paris authorities. Rousseau fled France and settled in Switzerland, but he continued to find difficulties with authorities and quarrel with friends. The end of Rousseau’s life was marked in large part by his growing paranoia and his continued attempts to justify his life and his work. This is especially evident in his later books, The ConfessionsThe Reveries of the Solitary Walker, and Rousseau: Judge of Jean-Jacques.

Rousseau greatly influenced Immanuel Kant’s work on ethics. His novel Julie or the New Heloise impacted the late eighteenth century’s Romantic Naturalism movement, and his political ideals were championed by leaders of the French Revolution.

Discourse on the Sciences and Arts

This is the work that originally won Rousseau fame and recognition. The Academy of Dijon posed the question, “Has the restoration of the sciences and arts tended to purify morals?” Rousseau’s answer to this question is an emphatic “no.” The First Discourse won the academy’s prize as the best essay. The work is perhaps the greatest example of Rousseau as a “counter-Enlightenment” thinker. For the Enlightenment project was based on the idea that progress in fields like the arts and sciences do indeed contribute to the purification of morals on individual, social, and political levels.

The First Discourse begins with a brief introduction addressing the academy to which the work was submitted. Aware that his stance against the contribution of the arts and sciences to morality could potentially offend his readers, Rousseau claims, “I am not abusing science…I am defending virtue before virtuous men.” (First Discourse, Vol. I, p. 4). In addition to this introduction, the First Discourse is comprised of two main parts.

The first part is largely an historical survey. Using specific examples, Rousseau shows how societies in which the arts and sciences flourished more often than not saw the decline of morality and virtue. He notes that it was after philosophy and the arts flourished that ancient Egypt fell. Similarly, ancient Greece was once founded on notions of heroic virtue, but after the arts and sciences progressed, it became a society based on luxury and leisure. The one exception to this, according to Rousseau, was Sparta, which he praises for pushing the artists and scientists from its walls. Sparta is in stark contrast to Athens, which was the heart of good taste, elegance, and philosophy. Interestingly, Rousseau here discusses Socrates, as one of the few wise Athenians who recognized the corruption that the arts and sciences were bringing about. Rousseau paraphrases Socrates’ famous speech in the Apology. In his address to the court, Socrates says that the artists and philosophers of his day claim to have knowledge of piety, goodness, and virtue, yet they do not really understand anything. Rousseau’s historical inductions are not limited to ancient civilizations, however, as he also mentions China as a learned civilization that suffers terribly from its vices.

The second part of the First Discourse is an examination of the arts and sciences themselves, and the dangers they bring. First, Rousseau claims that the arts and sciences are born from our vices: “Astronomy was born from superstition; eloquence from ambition, hate, flattery, and falsehood; geometry from avarice, physics from vain curiosity; all, even moral philosophy, from human pride.” (First Discourse, Vol. I, p. 12). The attack on sciences continues as Rousseau articulates how they fail to contribute anything positive to morality. They take time from the activities that are truly important, such as love of country, friends, and the unfortunate. Philosophical and scientific knowledge of subjects such as the relationship of the mind to the body, the orbit of the planets, and physical laws that govern particles fail to genuinely provide any guidance for making people more virtuous citizens. Rather, Rousseau argues that they create a false sense of need for luxury, so that science becomes simply a means for making our lives easier and more pleasurable, but not morally better.

The arts are the subject of similar attacks in the second part of the First Discourse. Artists, Rousseau says, wish first and foremost to be applauded. Their work comes from a sense of wanting to be praised as superior to others. Society begins to emphasize specialized talents rather than virtues such as courage, generosity, and temperance. This leads to yet another danger: the decline of military virtue, which is necessary for a society to defend itself against aggressors. And yet, after all of these attacks, the First Discourse ends with the praise of some very wise thinkers, among them, Bacon, Descartes, and Newton. These men were carried by their vast genius and were able to avoid corruption. However, Rousseau says, they are exceptions; and the great majority of people ought to focus their energies on improving their characters, rather than advancing the ideals of the Enlightenment in the arts and sciences.

The Second Discourse, like the first, was a response to a question put forth by the academy of Dijon: “What is the origin of inequality among men; and is it authorized by the natural law?” Rousseau’s response to this question, the Discourse on the Origin of Inequality, is significantly different from the First Discourse for several reasons. First, in terms of the academy’s response, the Second Discourse was not nearly as well received. It exceeded the desired length, it was four times the length of the first, and made very bold philosophical claims; unlike the First Discourse, it did not win the prize. However, as Rousseau was now a well-known and respected author, he was able to have it published independently. Secondly, if the First Discourse is indicative of Rousseau as a “counter-Enlightenment” thinker, the Second Discourse, by contrast, can rightly be considered to be representative of Enlightenment thought. This is primarily because Rousseau, like Hobbes, attacks the classical notion of human beings as naturally social. Finally, in terms of its influence, the Second Discourse is now much more widely read, and is more representative of Rousseau’s general philosophical outlook. In the Confessions, Rousseau writes that he himself sees the Second Discourse as far superior to the first..


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