Mar 5, 2007

Theories on Lost?

I've been catching up on some of my TV lately, mainly the third season of Lost.

Question: what are they trying to hint at with the character names? Locke. Hume. Rousseau. Three very important philosophers.

Locke was an empiricist who emphasized the social contract as an alternative to Hobbes "state of nature". One of the driving forces in the thought behind the founding of America.

Rousseau was another Enlightenment thinker, though many consider him among the founders of Romanticism too. His theories fuelled both nationalism and socialism as political ideals. Again, he emphasized the social contract.

Finally, Hume. Principle mover behind the Scottish Enlightenment, probably the single most coherent expression of skepticism in philosophy can be found in his works. His political ideas have often been seen to be conservative, but he was said to have been a motivating force behind James Madison's writings. He also held the belief that through trade and economic development one could move from a state of barbarism to a civilized and progressive society.

So what does this mean? Not a clue. But there is a very important theme of social contract against the "law of the jungle" that runs through all 3, as well as links to the American and French revolutions, who were both very similar in aims, if not their ends. A clue as to the later plot of the program? Who knows?

4 comments:

Baron von Hoopla said...

Call me a cynic, but I think the writers are simply trying to sound smarter than they probably are.

Or, it will all turn out to be a philosophy-based reality gameshow.

Episkopos Cain said...

Could be, it wouldn't surprise me....but according to the guy who plays Jack (mental blank), it does all tie together into a larger, coherent plot.

Baron von Hoopla said...

Oh, I'm not claiming that they don't know where the plot is going, I just doubt very much that the philosophical names have much -or anything- to do with it.

Episkopos Cain said...

Ah, gotcha.