Courses: Topics: Orig of Pol Phil-Historical Perspectives (PHILB395001)

Fall 2012

Class Number: 2446
This is a topics course. Course content varies
Div: III; Haverford: Humanities (HU)
In this course, we will examine the nature and formation of political
action and thought in Western society. Our approach will be both
historical and thematic. Historically, we will examine the changing
notions of the political in the Western tradition by considering
various canonical texts, such as Plato’s Republic, Aristotle’s
Politics, and Hobbes’s Leviathan. In examining historical texts, we
will consider the following questions: what are the operative norms?
Who is the political actor under consideration? What constitutes a
political event? Who remains on the outside? Must there be an outside?
Inherent in this mode of questioning will be an exploration of the
ideas of justice, equality, liberty, rights, subjectivity, and
revolution. The class also aims to address the current
socio-political climate. Are we, as Francis Fukuyama declared, living
at the end of history? Did the events of May 1968 or the Revolutions
of 1989 signify epochal shifts in political and social life? What is
the role of critique today? To lay the groundwork for this
investigation, we will first examine various texts by Karl Marx and
Friedrich Engels. We will then examine various 20th- and 21st-century
critical theories, including texts by theorists of the Frankfurt
School and various anarchist, feminist, and environmentalist thinkers.

Fulfills: Class Nbr: 2446 Div: III; HU

Department

Philosophy (Web site)

Taught By

Vitale,Sarah E.

Location

Bryn Mawr, TAYC

Meeting Times

TTH 9:45am-11:15am