academy

 

POLI 212 (TH)
HISTORY OF WESTERN POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY

Spring 2014

MWF 1:50-2:50pm

EAT 209

Prof Sammy Basu PhD

 

Office: Sml 317

Hours: TTh 10:00-11:20am

or by appointment at x6264

mailto:sbasu@willamette.edu

http://www.willamette.edu/~sbasu/poli212/212Syllabus.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.

 

 

 

GOALS OF THE COURSE: STUDENT LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

Objectives of this course include improving student's abilities:

 

 

To better understand the subfield of political philosophy/political theory

To become more familiar with the range of explanatory and ethical theories of politics in the Western canon of political theory

To be able to reflect on the relevance of theorizing for contemporary political problems

To be able to think historically about authors and their texts (MOI: TH)

 

 

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.'

 

 

Description: plato

Description: aristotle

Description: machiavelli

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Description: Rousseau

Description: 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)

 

COURSE EVALUATION

 

This course is organized around the readings and lectures.  Consequently, the student is expected to read, attend, and reflect.  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: regular attendance, completion of incidental assignments.

 

Exams focus on key concepts, arguments, images, and comparative analysis of historiographical approaches.  The student must receive a passing grade in each component to pass the course. Willamette's Credit Hour Policy holds that for every hour of class time there will be 2-3 hours work outside of class.  Thus, the student should anticipate spending 6-9 hours work each week.

 

Please tell me about any disabilities that will affect your participation in this course. I will respect any accommodations authorized in advance by the Office of Disability Services, Phone: (503) 370-6471, (TT) (503) 375-5383. I will also attempt to accommodate days of special religious observance if identified within the first two weeks of class.   

In keeping with university policies, plagiarism or other forms of cheating will NOT be tolerated.

 

 

REQUIRED COURSE READINGS

Student should complete the assigned reading and take the time to reflect on the meaning of the reading before each 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

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

Mon 1/13

Syllabus and Introduction to Political Philosophy          

Wed 1/15

Political Philosophy continued and Assignment 1 (upload to WISE)

Fri 1/17

History and Historiography.      Assignment 2 (upload to WISE)

Mon 1/20

No Class – No Class: Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration

 

Plato-Alcibiades

:images:athens.jpg

PLATO
(428-348BC)

Republic

Ancient Athens

 

Wed 1/22

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

Fri 1/24

Ordering, the just, and ungendered polis: pp.94-111, 119-146.

 

Add/Drop Deadline

Mon 1/27

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

Wed 1/29

regimes, democratic decadence, and the soul: pp.213-253, 257-292.

Fri 1/31

thinking historically about Plato

 

aristotle

Alexanderemp

 

ARISTOTLE
(384-322BC)

 

Politics

 

Empire of Alexander

 

Mon 2/3

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

Wed 2/5

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

Fri 2/7

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

Mon 2/10

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

 

Aristotle on Regimes, and thinking historically about Aristotle

 

 

 

 

machsignature

italy

NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI

(1469-1527)

The Prince and the Discourses

Renaissance Italy

 

Wed 2/12

Ancient Greek Thought, Medieval Thought and Machiavelli and Life .

 

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

Fri 2/14

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

Mon 2/17

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

Wed 2/19

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

  

Why learn not to be good?  And Caterina Sforza

 

thinking historically about Machiavelli

Fri 2/21

Review, no really!

 

 

Mon 2/24

Exam 1 Grade Dist  & Best Polity

CR/NCR Deadline

 

 

:images:hobbesthom.jpeg

leviathan

england2

THOMAS HOBBES

(1588-1679)

 

Leviathan

 

Stuart England

 

Wed 2/26

Hobbes, commonwealth, frontispiece, method, pp.3, 491, 9-14, (Book I.Intro, ch1)

Fri 2/28

Men and madness: pp.24-55, 62, 69-86 (Book I.ch4-8, 10 first page, ch.11-12) .  

Mon 3/3

natural condition, natural laws, and the birth of Leviathan: 86-145 (BookI.ch13-16, BookII.ch17-20).

Wed 3/5

liberty, law, order, and monsters: pp.145-54, 164-74, 183-191, 198-207, 221-39, 252-4, 483-91. (BookII.ch 21, end of 22-24, 26-first ½ of 27, 29-30, Review  & Conclusion)

Fri 3/7

thinking historically about Hobbes

 

 

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

2nd

:images:America1700.jpg

JOHN LOCKE

(1632-1704)

Two Treatises of Government

England (and America)

 

Mon 3/10

Locke, patriarchy: pp.242-262.

Wed 3/12

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

Fri 3/14

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

Mon 3/17

conquest, and complaint: pp.349-387.

Wed 3/19

thinking historically about Locke. . . .

Fri 3/21

Discussion

 

Withdrawal Deadline

M3/24-F3/28

Spring Break

 

 

1stdiscourse

JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU

(1712-1778)

The Discourses and the Social Contract

France and Switzerland

 

Mon 3/31

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

Wed 4/2

First Discourse continued, pp.1-21. . . . .

 

 

Fri 4/4

A Tribe Called Red

 

 

Description: Macintosh HD:Users:sbasu:Desktop:atcr-2-small-640x375.jpg

 

Mon 4/7

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

Wed 4/9

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

Fri 4/11

thinking historically about Rousseau and Review

Mon 4/14

Exam 2 (grade dist)

 

 

Wed 4/16

No Class: Student Scholarship Recognition Day

 

jsmillsign

london1832

JOHN STUART MILL

(1806-1873)

On Liberty and The Subjection of Women

London, England

 

Fri 4/18

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

Mon 4/21

freedom elaborated On Liberty, pp.37-55.

Wed 4/23

individuality, authority, and harm: On Liberty, pp.56-115. Freedom 1, 2, 3, 4, 5,

Fri 4/25

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

            Ideals of Victorian Womanhood

            A womanÕs right, BEP v AM                            

Mon 4/28

SAIs, thinking historically about Mill

TBD

Review

 

 

Mon 5/5

2-5pm  Exam 3

 

 

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