On the cover of its special edition magazine commemorating the 300th anniversary of the birth of Jean-Jacques Rousseau (June 28, 1712), Le Monde designates him as "the Subversive." True enough, Rousseau was a contestataire, a non-conformist, a rebel, a pre-revolutionary, whose remains were carried to the Pantheon in the aftermath of the French Revolution, to be buried a hero.
Rousseau shall forever be known for championing liberty. Famously, for Rousseau, individuals are born and remain free, and enjoy equal rights. Society corrupted the individual, but all was not lost. Through building a "culture," individuals could transform social life and live in accordance with nature.