Who is Johannes Althusius?June 25, 2021
German political philosopher and lawyer. He defended the social contract theory and the natural law doctrine.
Born in Diedenshausen in the Westphalien region, his place of death is unknown. There is not enough information about his family and early youth period. After 1581, he worked on Aristotelian philosophy in Cologne. He studied Roman Law in Basel. During this period he was influenced by the Calvinist religious view. Christian beliefs, Roman Law and the views of democracy in that age are the factors that shape and develop Althusius’ thoughts. In the light of these factors, he studied public and religious law in Basel. He completed his doctorate in 1586. He made a connection between Roman Law and philosophy; In particular, he adopted the view that the philosophy of the state stems from the principles of law. In addition to these studies, he taught Roman Law and philosophy at a high school in Herborn that spread the Calvinist doctrine. He became a professor in 1594 and served as rector between 1597 and 1604. In 1604 he went to Ostfriesland and became a member of the House of Emden.
Althusius focused his views on public administration and international law. He approached philosophy by starting from the problems concerning the social order. Althusius aimed to reconcile the Calvinist doctrine with political philosophy in general, and to develop Aristotle’s understanding of politics in particular.
– The political philosophy of Johannes Althusius
– Political thoughts of Johannes Althusius
Prepared by: Sociologist Ömer YILDIRIM
Source: Omer YILDIRIM’s Personal Lecture Notes. Atatürk University Sociology Department 1st Year “Introduction to Philosophy” and 2nd, 3rd, 4th Grade “History of Philosophy” Lecture Notes (Ömer YILDIRIM); Open Education Philosophy Textbook