John Locke

Kelli Reyes, Elyssa Madden, Michael Hall

Family History

  • Born: August 29, 1632 in Wrington, Somerset, England both his parents were Puritans and so was he
  • 1652 Attended Christ Church in Oxford
  • 1656 Graduated Christ Church
  • 1668 he was elected a fellow in the Royal Society
  • 1672 Locke became Secretary of Presentations and Secretary of the Council of Trade by the first Earl of Shaftesbury
  • 1674 Graduated with a bachelors in Medicine
  • 1683 John to flee England because of a failed assassination attempt on the King Charles I and his brother
  • 1689 Two Treatises of Government and An Essay Concerning Human Understanding was published



"Relationship between an individual and a state in which the individual owes allegiance to the state."

I think that John Locke didn't have citizenship because he failed to have allegiance toward the government as he helped inspire the revolutions for American independence that would take place after he died. He said that people didn’t need to fight against an oppressive government, but that they had the right to. His essays, planted the idea of starting a revolution that the Colonists would later read. Another reason why I think John Locke didn’t have citizenship is because he had wanted to get rid of the government before his exile. When he returned, he was seen as a hero because King James II had fled the country and the power was shifting to Parliament. This is what his essays were also about. He might have changed the government for a good reason but he went about it the wrong way.


“the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness”

I think that John Locke had integrity because he was a philosopher, known as Father of Classic Liberalism, and was one of the most influential Enlightenment thinkers. Integrity also means understanding human behavior especially between good and bad, and right and wrong. John Locke believed in reasoning to understand truth and many of his ideas from republicanism and liberal theory were shown in the Declaration of Independence. He argued that people have rights such as: life, liberty, and property. John Locke believed that we as people should instead use reason to search for truth and not just rely on the opinions from authority or be subject to superstition.

Contribution to Colonial Development

Because John Locke was long dead at the start of the American Revolution, the main ways that he contributed to American independence were his ideas. He advocated governmental separation of powers and claimed that revolution is not only a right, but an obligation in circumstances where the government is being oppressive. It was this view that inspired the revolutionaries in America to take up arms against their British oppressors. Many even say that he inspired the phrase "Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" in the American Declaration of Independence when he said that "no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty, or possessions" in his second treatise of civil government.

Three Minute Philosophy - John Locke

Political Affiliations

Many of John Locke’s political ideas were influenced by the Whigs. The Whigs were a political party that played a large role in the Glorious Revolution in 1688 and were succeeded by the liberal party. Locke participated in political philosophy during what was a modern time of liberalism; this is why he was known as the Father of Classical Liberalism. In today’s modern time Locke was also considered a libertarian. Libertarianism is political philosophies that hold liberty as one of their highest values. Another reason why Locke stressed that all people have the rights of life, liberty, and property.