Calvinism and Hobbesian Philosophy in the Works of Bill Watterson

Watterson’s strategic use of nomenclature when it came to naming his famous comic (and its two central characters) is well known, as its evocation of two historically significant philosophers guides the reader to look beyond the comic’s perceived childishness to discover deep-seated philosophical themes. However, might there be a special reasoning as to why he chose these two specific thinkers? Does the character of Calvin in any way represent post-Lutheran Christian reformational dogmatism? Does Hobbes illustrate the necessity of Social Contract theory to maintain civilized order in light of mankind’s inherently brutish nature? In what ways might these philosophical outlooks be reflected in the young boy’s imaginative adventures with his stuffed tiger?

  • This is a great topic and you have raised so many excellent points here to discuss for a true CH fan. I would look forward to reading this article. – Munjeera 7 years ago
  • This would be cool to read. I once wrote an exegesis of Green Eggs and Ham for a hoot. This would be fun too. – LisaDee 7 years ago
  • My daughter just told me that Calvin once told Hobbes he was trying to trick Santa by writing a letter claiming to be Calvin's nicer brother, Melville. Hmm... – Tigey 7 years ago

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