Thursday, 24 March 2016

Jean-Jacques Rousseau (IEI): Personality Type Analysis

Jean-Jacques Rousseau was a Francophone Genevan scholar and essayist of the Age of Enlightenment. His Political Philosophy, especially his definition of social contract hypothesis, unequivocally impacted the French Revolution and the advancement of the Liberal, Conservative and Socialist hypothesis. A splendid, undisciplined and flighty scholar all through his vivid life, his perspectives on Philosophy of Education and on religion were just as disputable yet by and by powerful. He is considered to have imagined present day self-portrayal and his novel 'Julie, ou la nouvelle Héloïse' was one of the top of the line anecdotal works of the eighteenth Century and was vital to the improvement of Romanticism. He additionally made essential commitments to music, both as a scholar and as an author.

One day in 1742, Jean-Jacques Rousseau read a copy of the local newsletter, 'The Metro DeVos'. It contained an essay on whether recent advances in the arts and sciences had contributed to what was called the "purification of morals" - which would could also be referred to as an inquiry on whether the world was getting better or not. Rousseau experienced an epiphany, it struck him that civilization and progress had not improved people. Instead, this progress had exacted a destructive influence on the morality of human beings who had once been morally prosperous. Rousseau took this insight and turned it into the central thesis to what became his celebrated discourse the Arts and Sciences. His argument was simple - individuals had once been good and happy, though once people emerged from their social state and joined society, they eventually become plagued by vice and sin. In this work and it's twin discourse On the Origins and Foundations of Inequality, Rousseau went on to sketch what it might have been like at the beginning of history - an idyllic period which he called 'the state of nature'. Long ago, when men and women lived in forests and never entered a shop or read a newspaper, the philosopher pictured people independently stating their own minds and being drawn towards the essentials of a satisfied life. A love for family, a respect for nature, an awe at the beauty of the universe and a taste for music or simple entertainment. This 'state of nature' was moral and guided by spontaneous pity, empathy for others and their suffering. The following about Rousseau's work indicate a demonstrative need for assessing his connections, patterns and implications of human nature through imaginative insight. This is often the case of T1 types who are especially drawn to abstract and spiritual work and the world-rejectingness of being able to declare that the current state of the world that we live in is flawed - desperately needing to be improved, in Rousseau's mind.

Rousseau glorified the idea of human beings in their natural state, it followed in the novels that he wrote, he constantly celebrated intense feeling rather than great deeds or social events. In his novel, 'Julie' written in 1761, Rousseau depicted the excitement and anguish of an upper-class woman caught in a love triangle between her sensitive tutor and boring aristocratic man. Rousseau's contemporaries might have seen Julie as unwise in her feelings as a passing fancy, but Rousseau painted her love in a much higher light. He developed the depth, honor and grandeur of romantic love in his novels - regardless of the confusion of polyamorous relationships at the time. Throughout his life, Rousseau was similarly romantic and or perhaps derogatorily referred to as self-absorbed. In his famous 'Confessions', one of the first ever autobiographies, Rousseau spent pages exploring his inner life. It contained how he found shopping so frustrating, the feeling of tenderness for his ex's new partner and the joys of gardening. To him, these weren't trivial or self-absorbed topics, they were a part of an important task - to show what living is like on the inside. This proves to be excellent evidence for Rousseau to have Strong and Valued E2, in that he felt the need to express the nature of his T1 centered musings in a very thoughtful and introspective demeanor - to better support his deeply moral causes by getting others emotionally invested.

To clarify, this brings to light what exactly about civilization that Rousseau thought corrupted people and led to moral degeneracy. Rousseau claimed that the march towards civilization awakened in people an unhealthy form of 'amour propre' or self-love. He identified it as something artificial was centred around pride, jealously and vanity - it became clear to me that Rousseau greatly favored authenticity as a virtuous trait. Rousseau argued that this destructive form of self-love had emerged as people had moved into cities and there had begun to compare themselves to others, thus creating their own identities solely by reference to their neighbors. Civilized people had stopped thinking about what they wanted and they felt, instead imitating other people by entering into competitions for status and money - losing sight of their own sensations. Rousseau was generally unconcerned with how to improve or optimize his criticisms of society with constructive pragmatism, behaving ambivalent towards the more factual approach to solving the problems of society. This mentality of preferring to do morally good things with the goal of making us feel good rather than accepting this as the most logical solution does fit the description of weak and subdued P4.

Rousseau is forever associated with the term, 'noble savage' because it was his work that described the innocence and morality of our ancestors and contrasted it with modern decadence. At the time that Rousseau was writing, European society was fascinated by the plight of the North American tribes. Reports of Indian society drawn up in the 16th century had once described Indians as materially simple, yet psychologically rich and interesting. Rousseau fantasized over these interesting societies with close-knit, egalitarian, religious and martial. However, in a few decades after the arrival of the Europeans - the status system of Indian society had been revolutionized through contact with technology and luxury of European industry. Indians had now longed for guns, alcohol, beads and mirrors. Rates of suicide and alcoholism had risen and the originally prosperous communities/factions were crumbling. Modern society the lives of people who had once lived happily in the state of nature. Rousseau uses these examples to demonstrate how immoral modern society is, by forming these logical categories to fit his worldview. However, he was very prone to irrelevant tangents and unclear illustrations in his novels, often failing to address the intended point completely. The following does in fact, give us a clear example of someone with bold and weak L6.
Rousseau's interest in natural goodness made him interested in the idea (not quite the reality) of children. In 1762, he wrote 'Emile' or 'On Education' which was perhaps one of the most successful books ever written about how to raise children. Rousseau had suggested that all children were born naturally good and that the key to raising them was to always prevent their corruption by society. This idea became widely influential, parents before this time had seen their children as wicked or as blank-slates. They had now viewed them as fountains of wisdom and tried to give them a childhood full of play and visits to forests and lakes. Even aside from this, Rousseau is quite clearly capable at using E and R, but shows a natural preference for E in his musings. An unmistakable nonconformist who was preoccupied with the equity of autonomy and individual self-determination is a better fit for someone with R8.

The following of what has been mentioned about Jean-Jacques Rousseau clearly points towards T1, E2, P4, L6, and R8. In conclusion, I believe Jean-Jacques Rousseau is a superb representative of the IEI type of information metabolism.

To learn more about IEI, click here.

If you are confused by our use of Socionics shorthand, click here.

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