David Mytton

Book Review (5/5) – The Social Contract (Jean-Jacques Rousseau)

Published (updated: ) in Book Reviews.

Originally published on Goodreads.

The UK has had some kind of election major every year for the last 5 years and every time the “wrong” party wins, I find the inevitable protests amusing. I have nothing against protests per se, when they are reasonable and targeted at specific causes, but I find protests against legitimate, democratic votes to be absurd. You might not agree with the result but to use your right to protest against the legitimate outcome of the right to vote makes no sense at all.

Although written several hundred years ago, The Social Contract stands up even in 2019, perhaps even more so with hashtags like #notmygovernment. My advice to those protesters would be to read The Social Contract. Your right to protest is only available because of the surrender of certain other freedoms by being a member of a democratic society. If you are protesting the very basis of that society – the outcome of a vote – then you are essentially protesting your right to vote.