more from Jonathan Wolff

Single Idea 20500

[catalogued under 24. Political Theory / B. Nature of a State / 2. State Legitimacy / d. General will]

Full Idea

The general will demands the policy which is equally in everyone's interests. Thus we can think of the general will as the general interest.

Gist of Idea

We can see the 'general will' as what is in the general interest


Jonathan Wolff (An Introduction to Political Philosophy (Rev) [2006], 3 'Rousseau')

Book Reference

Wolff,Jonathan: 'An Introduction to Political Philosophy (Rev)' [OUP 2006], p.79

A Reaction

That seems to assume that the people know what is in their interests. Rousseau's General Will mainly concerns who governs, and their mode of government, but not details of actual policy.