Nonetheless, few believe that it is always unjustified, since it seems that no society could function without some authorized uses of coercion.It helps keep the bloody minded and recalcitrant from harming others, and seems also to be an indispensable technique in the rearing of children.
Nonetheless, few believe that it is always unjustified, since it seems that no society could function without some authorized uses of coercion.It helps keep the bloody minded and recalcitrant from harming others, and seems also to be an indispensable technique in the rearing of children.Nonetheless, there has been little sustained scholarly attention to its nature until recently; historically, many seem to have been willing to accept the concept of coercion as a primitive. The new found interest in the topic coincides with a marked change in the way philosophers have understood its nature.Tags: Sales Business PlansE-Commerce Essay TopicsAcademic Literature ReviewHouse Of Commons Library Research PapersCritical Thinking Multiple Choice QuizSkills For Critical ThinkingReview Of Literature Of Working Capital ManagementStrategic Plan For BusinessEssay On Night By Elie Wiesel
It is also sometimes treated as a quite general concept encompassing almost any sort of interpersonal infringement on one's rights.
Such uses are not wholly foreign to philosophical discussions (see, e.g., Ripstein 2004).
So only some uses of violence to hinder another's actions have the effect of exempting the person targeted from blame for things done as a result of violence.
These three modern-era thinkers differ in innumerable ways in their philosophical and ethical views, though they seem to hold surprisingly similar views of the nature of coercion and its role in the function of justice and the state.
For he that performs first has no assurance the other will perform after; because the bonds of words are too weak to bridle men's ambition, avarice, anger, and other Passions, without the fear of some coercive Power. But in a civil estate, where there is a Power set up to constrain those that would otherwise violate their faith, that fear is no more reasonable; and for that cause, he which by the Covenant is to perform first, is obliged so to do (Hobbes 1651, Ch.14).
Interestingly, Hobbes seems to share Aquinas' view that acting from fear does not undercut the voluntariness of one's acts, as he famously asserts that “covenants extorted by fear are valid,” at least if it is a covenant needed to secure one's life and no sovereign authority prohibits the making of such a covenant (Hobbes 1651, Ch. More generally, the very possibility of establishing justice and injustice depends on the possibility of coercing subjects to abide by their covenants.Therefore, just as it is impossible for a thing to be at the same time violent and natural, so it is impossible for a thing to be absolutely coerced or violent, and voluntary (Aquinas, For Aquinas, the law and the government bear a special relationship to the use of coercion/compulsion.In a discussion of the nature of (human) law, Aquinas claims that “the notion of law contains two things: first, that it is a rule of human acts; secondly, that it has coercive power” (Aquinas, , I. This power is identified with the ability of rulers to use force and violence against their subjects: “the governor of a city has perfect coercive power: wherefore he can inflict irreparable punishments such as death and mutilation” (Aquinas , II. The law, Aquinas suggests, must use “force and fear” in order to restrain those who are “found to be depraved, and prone to vice, and not easily amenable to words,” so that they will “desist from evil-doing, and leave others in peace,” as well as become “habituated in this way,” and “virtuous” (Aquinas, , I. This power is not available for anyone to use: Aquinas argues that the coercive function should be “vested in the whole people or in some public personage,” and not allowed to private parties (Aquinas, , I. He does allow, however, that some parties, such as the head of a household (“an imperfect community”), must be able to use an “imperfect coercive power, which is exercised by inflicting lesser punishments, for instance by blows, which do not inflict irreparable harm” (.).Hobbes's fame as a political theorist derives at least in part from the central role he gives to coercion as a necessary part of a state's function.Noticing that many contracts require one party to perform one's obligations before the other party acts, Hobbes suggests that such first performance would be irrational if one has no means to secure the subsequent performance of one's bargaining partner.To say that something is voluntary, for Aquinas, implies that it follows from or is in accord with one's inclinations; in contrast, coercion is linked with the notions of violence and the involuntary.For we call that violent which is against the inclination of a thing. [A] thing is called voluntary because it is according to the inclination of the will.has two different faces, corresponding to the two parties involved in its most ordinary cases.On one face, it picks out a technique agents (coercers) can use to get other agents to do or not do something.Although one could start earlier, Aquinas offers a picture of what might be regarded as the traditional, canonical understanding of coercion, its importance, and consequences. Coercion, he says, is a kind of necessity in which the activities of one agent — the coercer — make something necessary for another agent.Discussion of coercion (sometimes also described as “compulsion”) recurs in the , I. The “necessity of coercion” is that in which “a thing must be, when someone is forced by some agent, so that he is not able to do the contrary” () meaning that what is done because of coercion is not done voluntarily.