What elements of the political philosophies of Locke, Hume, and Smith can you identify in the American political system of today?
What elements of Rousseau’s thought are nowhere in evidence, and why is this so?
- Hume Idea of a Perfect Commonwealth
- Locke Two Treatises of Civil Government Part II Ch 2-3
- Rousseau The Social Contract Book III
- Recall from last week, Adam Smith, in Wealth of Nations (1776), provided the philosophical justification for liberalism, which we use more or less interchangeably with capitalism. Marx, almost a century later, analyzed capitalism in a starkly different manner.What did Marx, the theorist, believe to be the fault with Smith’s view of capitalism, and with capitalism itself? (Remember not to get sidetracked by whether or not socialist ideas are worth pursuing).
- Reading Resources:
- The enduring significance of the thought of Karl Marx.
- The Marx-Hegel relationship: Revisionist interpretations?
- Two of a kind: Hegel, Marx, dialectic and form.
- Evaluate the criteria that Kant sets out for a republican government in Toward Perpetual Peace, and the role that this form of government plays in his overall theory of how war might be avoided.
- Reading Resources
- The Hegelian legacy in Dewey’s social and political philosophy, 1915-1920
- Unnatural Rights: Hegel and Intellectual Property.
- From deliberation to participation: John Dewey’s challenge to contemporary democratic theory
- Week 8:
- We’ve reviewed the evolution of political thought over the millennia until today, with each theory revising, challenging, refuting, affirming, or augmenting past theories. Although the world has seen great improvements in the rights of all people and in standards of living, we are all too aware of the improvements that still need to be made. What would the perfect society look like and why?
- Reading Resources:
- Aldo Leopold The Land Ethic
- Gendered harassment in secondary schools: understanding teachers’ (non) interventions
- LGBT Oppression Watson
- Feminism, generation and intersectionality
- Returning to Rawls: Social contracting, social justice, and transcending the limitations of Locke.
- Rawls, Mill, and the Puzzle of Political Liberalism.
- Rawls and racial justice
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