Hobbes, Thomas (1651). Leviathan

The famous frontispiece to Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan depicts the head and torso of a long-haired, mustachioed man. Upon close scrutiny, it becomes evident that the man’s torso and arms are composed of tiny individual persons, crowded closely together and each looking toward the head of the composite Leviathan.
Descartes said, “I think, therefore I am,” but the root of Western political culture is psychosomatic:
  1. “Obedience to authority” (willingness to perform violent political acts) derives from the fact that subjects experience themselves as bound to the body of the King—unable to resist the commands of the head of this body.
  2. Psychic compensation for being a tiny, submissive body takes the form of being bound inseparably to an enormous, powerful body.
  3. Political participation is generated by the desire to fuse with the body of a sovereign conceived as gigantic and omnipotent.