PHIL-161 Contemporary Political Thought
Fall for 2013-2014
This course largely carries on from where Political and Social Thought left off, taking a more in-depth look at modern political thought. It provides an overview of the most influential contemporary schools of political thought. Each week students read texts. I will lecture on the topic, and then we will have a general class discussion on the same topic—sometimes on the same day, sometimes on succeeding days. The course will cover the following topics: overview of contemporary political thought, liberalism, conservatism, Marxism, communitarianism, feminism, environmentalism, post-structuralism and post-modernism, multi-culturalism, political thought beyond the Western tradition, and democratic theory.
PHIL-161-10 Intro to Political Philosophy
In this class, we will take an issues-oriented approach to political philosophy. Rather than beginning with a philosophical theory and working to draw out its practical implications, we will use a political issue (e.g., abortion, capital punishment, healthcare, …) to motivate philosophical study. Good philosophy can organize, clarify, and challenge our thinking about controversial questions. In this class, we will use philosophy for these purposes.
In addition to being issues-oriented, this class will be discussion-oriented. Students must, therefore, come to class prepared to discuss the day’s material, and will be graded according to their contributions to class conversation. A series of short papers will also factor into their grades.
This course will be taught during the First Session of Summer 2010.
Other academic years
There is information about this course number in other academic years: