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Elementary Features Of Spinoza’s Political Philosophy (4p37s2)

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Chapter Summary

The goal of the Ethics is to show the person placed in what is at first an overpowering world (i.e. environment), a way by which he can work his way forward from his starting position in the world, i.e. his bondage, his subjugation to his passions, to a free, self-determined, and thus virtuous life. Having worked out a social psychology in the third part, in the fourth part Spinoza explains the individual's treatment of himself, with his own affectivity and the affects evoked by the interaction with other humans. In the two notes on Proposition 37, Spinoza first sketches conclusions for the free man's social and political engagement that follow from this constellation (4p37s1), and secondly the fundamental features of his political philosophy (4p37s2); throughout which the prospect of freedom - both ethical freedom, and the political freedom that creates favourable conditions for it - is the guiding principle.

Keywords: affects; bondage; ethical freedom; Ethics; features; humans; passions; political philosophy; Spinoza



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