In our last meetup, in which we discussed Upton Sinclair's The Jungle, the subject of a "state of nature" came up. The state of nature is the harsh natural condition that drives men and women to found civil societies for mutual protection. It is, in the famous formulation of Thomas Hobbes, a condition in which the life of a person is "nasty, brutish, and short" -- somewhat like the life of the poor in The Jungle.
Anyway, someone asked at our last meeting that I post the titles of the two works of political philosophy to which we were referring as the source of this idea. The are: Thomas Hobbes' The Leviathan and John Locke's Second Treatise on Civil Government.
Unless you're really a political philosophy junky, I'd get the summary off Wikipedia.
Thank you, as always, for your continued support of this club.
We are a group of dedicated classics readers who enjoy a book for the overall experience and don't take ourselves too seriously. No literary background is necessary and we definitely won't be talking in academ-ese. Our goal is to recreate the fun English class we all remember, but without the tests and essays. Our discussions are based mostly on reader responses and questions. We look forward to meeting anyone and everyone who wants to take part in discussions of great books.