Generally, it was their position that republics about the size of the individual states could survive, but that a republic on the size of the Union would fail. The effect of the first difference is, on the one hand, to refine and enlarge the public views, by passing them through the medium of a chosen body of citizens, whose wisdom may best discern the true interest of their country, and whose patriotism and love of justice, will be least likely to sacrifice it to temporary or partial considerations. As there is a degree of depravity in mankind which requires a certain degree of circumspection and distrust, so there are other qualities in human nature which justify a certain portion of esteem and confidence. Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. By a faction I understand a number of citizens, whether amounting to a majority or minority of the whole, who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion, or of interest, adverse to the rights of other citizens, or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community. Has the government lived up to Madison’s expectations? Federalist Archived January 13, , at the Wayback Machine , note 1.

Archived from the original on June 18, The papers can be broken down by author as well as by topic. On the other hand, the effect may be inverted. Hamilton enlisted the help of fellow lawyer John Jay. So strong is this propensity of mankind to fall into mutual animosities, that where no substantial occasion presents itself, the most frivolous and fanciful distinctions have been sufficient to kindle their unfriendly passions and excite their most violent conflicts. The Papers of James Madison. A particular point in support of this was that most of the states were focused on one industry—to generalize, commerce and shipping in the northern states and plantation farming in the southern.

The question Madison answers, then, is how to eliminate the negative effects of faction. The split is deeply cultural, but that culture is undeniably correlated with geography; it is a divide between the coasts and the center. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Retrieved December 5, McLean announced that they would publish the first 36 of the essays in a single volume. Yet the parties are and must be themselves the judges; and the most numerous party, or, in other words, the most powerful faction must be expected to prevail. But the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property.


Hence, it clearly appears, that the same advantage which a republic has over a democracy, in controlling the effects of faction, is enjoyed by a large over a small republic,–is enjoyed by the Union over the States composing it.

essay #10 of the federalist

Enlightened statesmen will not always be at yhe helm. A particular point in support of this was that most of the states were focused on one industry—to generalize, commerce and shipping in the northern states and plantation farming in the southern.

Inference and disputed authorship: While Madison’s “mean extent” for a republic has, in the modern United States, far exceeded the scope possible for forming a public will with respect to most particular issues, it may still be possible to form a coherent if thin understanding of the regime and, consequently, a defensive concert to federalst it.

essay #10 of the federalist

In addition to being large and populous states, Virginia and New York had the nation’s biggest and most diversified economies and could conceivably stand alone if necessary. Although written and published with haste, The Federalist articles were widely read and greatly influenced the shape of American political institutions. It may clog the administration, it may convulse the society; but it will be unable to execute and mask its violence under the forms of the Constitution.

Federalist No. 10

Madison recognizes what we have already seen. A republic, by which I mean a government in which the scheme of representation takes place, opens a different prospect, and promises the cure for which we are seeking.

essay #10 of the federalist

Were the pictures which have thr drawn by the political jealousy of some among us faithful likenesses of the human character, the inference would be that there is not sufficient virtue among men for self-government; and that nothing less than the chains of despotism can restrain them from destroying and devouring one another. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Garry Wills is a noted critic of Madison’s argument in Federalist No. The influence of factious leaders may kindle a flame within their particular states, but will be unable to spread a general conflagration through the other states: September 17, marked the signing of the final document.

After Federalist No. 10

By enlarging too much the number of electors, you render the representatives too little acquainted with all their local circumstances and lesser interests; as by reducing it too much, you render him unduly attached to these, and too little fit to comprehend and pursue great and national objects. The people will share a belief in the existence of an objective moral order, even if they dispute its content; passions, especially when they pertain to attachments or aversions to political leaders, will be unsustainable; government will not dictate the distribution of small economic advantages; geographic and constitutional distance will operate to dissipate federakist and, finally, the territory will not be so large that public opinion cannot form.


Men of factious tempers, of local prejudices, or of sinister designs, may, by intrigue, by corruption, or by other means, first obtain the suffrages, and then betray the interests, of the people.

Madison recognized that an excessively bleak portrait of human nature naturally leads feseralist despotism, not republicanism. Constitutional Commentary pp. The deliberate pace of communication did not require an institutional midwife.

The Federalist Papers – Wikipedia

Such a program, the construction of which must become a new imperative of Madisonian political science, would serve an additional purpose: In his book Explaining Americahe adopts the o of Robert Dahl in arguing that Madison’s framework does not necessarily enhance the protections of minorities or ensure the common good. The first publication to divide the papers in such a way was an edition that used a list left by Hamilton to associate the authors with their numbers; this edition appeared as two volumes of the compiled “Works of Hamilton”.

The friend of popular governments, never finds himself so much alarmed for their character and fate, as when he contemplates their propensity to oc dangerous vice. The first date of publication and the newspaper name were recorded for each essay. When a majority is included in a faction, the form of popular government, on the other hand, enables it to sacrifice to its ruling passion or interest both the public good and the rights of other citizens.

On the theoretical side, they leaned heavily on the work of Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu. An extensive territory actively undermines the incentive for conflict by further concentrating benefits and diffusing costs.

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