Since I have mentioned the name of my teacher, the great French thinker, Rousseau ( 1712-1768 ) often in my posts, some people asked me about him.
I suggest you begin by reading Will Durant's ' The Story of Civilization'. It is in several volumes, and should be available in any good library. It is in several volumes, and you should pick up the volume entitled ' Rousseau and Revolution '.and read it thoroughly. That will give you a good idea to begin with.
The ' expression ' general will ' used often by Rousseau, and popularized in the great French Revolution of 1789 ( about which also you should read ), really meant the sovereignty of the people. This was in sharp contrast to the concept then still prevailing in some quarters that the sovereign is the king. Rousseau said that it is not the king but the people who are supreme. This is the foundation of all modern democracies.
Thus, while the theory of divine right of kings ( whose main proponent was King James 1 of England ) held that the king is supreme, being the Viceroy of God, and the people are subordinate to him, and therefore should always be obeyed, Rousseau, using the secular social contract theory,reversed this relationship, and said that it is the people who are supreme, and all state authorities, are their servants.
Though the English thinker Locke had introduced the concept in his ' Second treatise on Civil Government ', ( in which he postulated the theory of ' natural rights ' of citizens, which even the king could not infringe ), he made compromises in it, which Rousseau never did.