academy

POLI 212 (TH)
HISTORY OF

WESTERN POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY

Fall 2011

MWF 10:20-11:20am

ETN 209

Prof. Sammy Basu

 

Office: Sml 317

Hours: MW 1:50-3:00pm or by appointment

or by appointment at x6264

mailto:sbasu@willamette.edu

http://www.willamette.edu/~sbasu/poli212/212OUT11F.htm

 

COURSE SUMMARY

 

This course surveys selected texts in the pre-modern history of Western political philosophy.  Attention is paid to the range of responses to some of the fundamental moral and practical themes of political philosophy, such as authority, justice, obligation, liberty, equality, property, revolution, order, progress, and rights.  Both the themes and the responses are evaluated philosophically and viewed historically.

 

 

plato

aristotle

machiavelli

hobbesclose

Rousseau

Mill_JS

PLATO

(428-348BC)

ARISTOTLE
(384-322BC)

NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI
(1469-1527)

THOMAS HOBBES

(1588-1679)

JOHN

LOCKE

(1632-1704)

JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU

(1712-1778)

JOHN STUART MILL

(1806-1873)

 

 

STUDENT LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

Objectives of this course include improving student's abilities:

 

To better understand the subfield of ‘political philosophy/political theory’

-- more aware of distinct philosophical perspectives, positions, or schools

-- able to better utilize the language, concepts or discourse of political philosophy

To be able to ‘think historically’

-- more aware of distinct historiographical schools

 

 

PEDAGOGY

 

"Let the tutor make his charge pass everything through a sieve and lodge nothing in his head on mere authority and trust: let not Aristotle's principles be principles to him any more than those of the Stoics or Epicureans. Let this variety of ideas be set before him: he will choose if he can; if not he will remain in doubt."

Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), Essays, 'Of the education of children.'


 

COURSE EVALUATION CRITERIA

 

This course is organized around the readings, lectures, and discussions.  Consequently, the student is expected to read, attend, and participate.  The grade is composed of four components:

 

(25%)

Exam 1: on introductory materials, Plato, Aristotle, and Machiavelli.

 

(25%)

Exam 2: on introductory materials, Hobbes, Locke, and Rousseau.

 

(40%)

Exam 3: on Mill, and cumulative and comparative analysis of entire course.

 

(10%)

Participation: attendance, participation in discussion, completion of incidental assignments.

 

The student must receive a passing grade in each component to pass the course.

 

If you believe that you may have a disability requiring accommodation please contact

Disability Services, Baxter Hall, Phone: (503) 370-6471, (TT) (503) 375-5383.

Retroactive accommodation will not be possible.

 

 

REQUIRED COURSE READINGS

It is important that the student complete the assigned reading and take the time to reflect on the meaning of the reading, before coming to class.  All required readings are available at the WU Bookstore.  Books can be purchased elsewhere; however, it is important that the same publication edition be obtained.

 

 

Plato. The Republic.

(Trans.) G.M. Grube and C.D.C Reeve. Indianapolis: Hackett, 1992.

 

 

Aristotle. Politics.

(Trans.) C.D.C Reeve. Indianapolis: Hackett, 1998.

 

 

Niccolo Machiavelli. Selected Political Writings.

(Ed. and Trans.) David Wootton.  Indianapolis: Hackett, 1994.

 

 

Hobbes, Thomas. Leviathan.

(Ed.) Richard Tuck. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1991.

 

 

Locke. John. Political Writings.

(Ed. and Trans.) David Wootton.  Indianapolis: Hackett, 1994.

 

 

Rousseau, Jean-Jacques. The Basic Political Writings.

(Trans.) David A. Cress. (Intro.) Peter Gay. Indianapolis: Hackett, 1987

 

 

Mill, John Stuart. On Liberty and other writings.

(Ed.) Stefan Collini. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1989.

 

 

DATE

CLASS

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Wed 8/31

Introduction     Political Philosophy       Assignment 1

Fri 9/2

History and Historiography       Assignment 2

Mon 9/5

No Class - Labor Day

Wed 9/7

Author, Text, Context

 

:images:plato1.jpeg

Plato-Alcibiades

:images:athens.jpg

PLATO
(428-348BC)

Republic

Ancient Athens

 

Fri 9/9

Plato, what is justice?: 2 tests, pp.1-93.

Mon 9/12

ordering the just, and gendered polis: pp.94-111, 119-146.

Wed 9/14

philosophy and the philosopher-king: pp.146-194, 209-212.

Fri 9/16

and the cave: pp.146-194, 209-212.

Mon 9/19

regimes, and the soul: pp.213-253, 257-267.

Wed 9/21

and democratic decadence: pp. 276-292.

 

aristotle

Alexanderemp

 

ARISTOTLE
(384-322BC)

 

Politics

 

Empire of Alexander

 

Fri 9/23

 Aristotle, causation, man is a political animal: pp.1-64.

 

            Aristotle on Plato

Mon 9/26

the best possible state: pp.114, 191-242.

Wed 9/28

making the most of real politics: pp.65-91, 95-104, 110-1, 116-120.

Fri 9/30

preventing worse: pp.134-145, 152-8, 176-184.

 

            Aristotle on Regimes

Mon 10/3

thinking historically about Plato and Aristotle

 

 

 

 

machsignature

italy

NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI

(1469-1527)

The Prince and the Discourses

Renaissance Italy

 

Wed 10/5

Ancient, The Middle Ages and Machiavelli and Life

 

the art of the state: The Prince, pp.1-44.

Fri 10/7

cruel to be kind:: The Prince, pp.45-80.

Mon 10/10

republican domestic politics: The Discourses, Bk.I, pp.81-158.

Wed 10/12

republican foreign politics: The Discourses, Bks. II-III, pp.158-217.

  

         Caterina Sforza,

 

         Why learn not to be good?

Fri 10/14

 

thinking historically about Machiavelli and review, really, …

Mon 10/17

Exam 1 Grade Dist

 

:images:hobbesthom.jpeg

leviathan

england2

THOMAS HOBBES

(1588-1679)

 

Leviathan

 

Stuart England

 

Wed 10/19

Hobbes, context, frontispiece, method, pp.3, 491, 9-14,

Fri 10/21

No Class - Mid-semester day

Mon 10/24

Men and madness: pp.24-55, 62, 69-86.

Wed 10/26

natural condition, natural laws, and the birth of Leviathan: 86-145.

Fri 10/28

 

liberty, law, order, and monsters: pp.145-54, 164-74, 183-191, 198-207, 221-39, 252-4, 483-91.

 

 

Macintosh HD:Users:sbasu:Desktop:john-locke.jpg

2nd

:images:America1700.jpg

JOHN LOCKE

(1632-1704)

Two Treatises of Government

England (and America)

 

Mon 10/31

Locke, patriarchy: pp.242-262.

Wed 11/2

the state of nature, property, and power: pp.262-299, 210-11, 230-31.

Fri 11/4

consent, common-wealth, change: pp. 300-316,319-338, 342-347. . .

Mon 11/7

conquest, and complaint: pp.349-387.

Wed 11/9

thinking historically about Hobbes and Locke. . . .

 

 

1stdiscourse

JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU

(1712-1778)

The Discourses and the Social Contract

France and Switzerland

 

Fri 11/11

Rousseau, enlightenment and de-moralization: First Discourse, pp.1-21.

Mon 11/14

natural man, inequality, unhappiness: Second Discourse, pp.25-81, 94-95.

Wed 11/16

TBA

Fri 11/18

TBA

Mon 11/21

liberty and illiberality: The Social Contract, pp.141-165, 170-205, 219-227.

Wed 11/23

thinking historically about Rousseau and review

 

 

Fri 11/25

No Class - T-day break

 

 

Mon 11/28

Exam 2 (grade dist)

 

jsmillsign

london1832

JOHN STUART MILL

(1806-1873)

On Liberty and The Subjection of Women

London, England

 

Wed 11/30

Mill, liberty, and freedom of thought, caveats: On Liberty, pp.5-22, 23-36.

Fri 12/2

freedom elaborated On Liberty, pp.37-55.

Mon 12/5

individuality, authority, and harm: On Liberty, pp.56-115.

Wed 12/7

 

women: On Women, pp.119, 122-3, 128-152, 156-169, 184, 195-200, 212-7.

            Ideals of Victorian Womanhood

            A woman’s right, BEP v AM

thinking historically about Mill

Fri 12/9

Sun 12/11

Review

Review Session: 7-9pm, Smu 314

 

T (13 Dec)

8-11am  Exam 3

 

 

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