Stefano Visentin

Assolutismo e libertà. L'orizzonte repubblicano nel pensiero politico olandese del XVII secolo

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One of the foremost polemical targets of XVIIth century English republicanism is Thomas Hobbes's new political philosophy, whose contractarian basis is charged with sapping the freedom of the citizens of the commonwealth. However, the Hobbesian anthropological and, partly, political horizon seems to be presupposed by some Dutch authors of mid-XVIIth century, whose most eminent representative is Spinoza, who fight for republican autonomy against the establishment of a monarchical government in the United Provinces. More particularly, the notion of absolutism is used to criticize one-man rule and to praise the superiority of "imperium democraticum". This reveals the decisive common ground of English and Dutch republicanism in the same rejection of a philosophy that founds order on the full depoliticization of individual agency in order to neutralize any risk of conflict.

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