Footnotes (125)



Law Without Authority: Sources of the Welfare State in Spinoza's Tractatus Theologico-Politicus

Arthur J. Jacobson

Cardozo Law School

Cardozo Law Review, Forthcoming

In his Tractatus Theologico-Politicus (1670), Spinoza mounts an attack on authority in all its forms, including the authority of law and the state. Because authority in all its forms is a product of the imagination, obligation can never be justified. The subjects of Spinoza's commonwealth have no duties, only rights. Spinoza replaces the authority of the commonwealth with the welfare of subjects as the sign and the source of the commonwealth's flourishing. Spinoza was thus the first to propose that the only way for commonwealths to maintain the illusion of authority is by attending to the welfare of their citizens.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 59

Open PDF in Browser Download This Paper

Date posted: October 7, 2004  

Suggested Citation

Jacobson, Arthur J., Law Without Authority: Sources of the Welfare State in Spinoza's Tractatus Theologico-Politicus. Cardozo Law Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=571085

Contact Information

Arthur J. Jacobson (Contact Author)
Cardozo Law School ( email )
55 Fifth Ave.
New York, NY 10003
United States
212-790-0218 (Phone)
212-790-0205 (Fax)
Feedback to SSRN

Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 2,266
Downloads: 312
Download Rank: 64,288
Footnotes:  125

© 2015 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollo8 in 0.296 seconds