GLST 652: Political Philosophy Report a Broken Link

Political philosophy differs from history of political theory in that the fundamental categories in terms of which the state, the individual, freedom, etc. are conceived are critically examined. As Hegel noted, all too often those who engage in criticism do not critically reflect upon the categories employed in those critiques, assuming them to be obvious, self-evident, or unproblematic. Thus a political critique may assume a concept of freedom that is in fact put into question by the discourse being critiqued. Political philosophy attempts to avoid this naiveté by grasping the essential categories at work in various political theories and critiques, and in this way becoming as fully self-critical as we can be. As Socrates knew, critical thinking requires that we first become self-critical and thereby live the "examined life."

Week 1


Required Readings
Plato. Crito. Written 360 BCE; translated by Benjamin Jowett.
Supplementary Readings
Epitemelinks.com This web site is an excellent resource for information on philosphers, finding E-texts, and gathering other relevant information on political philosophy.

Week 2


Required Readings
Thomas Hobbes. Leviathan. Please read Chapters 1-3, 6, 11, 13-15, 17, 18, and 21. Text from the University of Oregon.
William Greider. "The Right and US Trade Law: Invalidating the 20th Century."
Richard Perle. "Thank God for the death of the UN."
Supplementary Readings
Nicolo Machiavelli. The Prince. The Prince broken down into chapters.
Adam Smith. The Wealth of Nations. The Wealth of Nations broken down into chapters.

Week 3


Required Readings
Jean Jacques Rousseau. The Social Contract or Principles of the Political Right. Book I-II.
Supplementary Readings
G. W. F. Hegel. The Philosophy of Right. Chapter index to The Philosophy of Right.
John Locke. An Essay Concerning Human Understanding. Chapter index of Locke's essay.

Week 4


Required Readings
Jean Jacques Rousseau. The Social Contract or Principles of the Political Right. Book III-IV. (Please Note: For Book II follow last week's link to Book I.)
Cy Gonick. "Trade, Peace, Sovereignty."
Paper delivered at the Parkland Conference, Edmonton Alberta, November 16, 2002.
Laxer, Gord. "Stop Rejecting Sovereignty." Canadian Dimension Magazine. (January/February 2003) (optional)
Dobbin, Murray. "It's All about democracy - Not Sovereignty." Canadian Dimension Magazine (November/December 2002). (Optional)
Supplementary Readings
Karl Marx. Grundrisse der Kritik der Politischen Ökonomie (The Grundrisse). Economic Works of Karl Marx 1857-61.

Week 5


Required Readings
Herbert Marcuse. One-Dimensional Man. Read introduction and chapter one.
Karl Marx. The German Ideology. History: Fundamental Conditions.
Karl Marx. Capital. 1867 - From volume one, part one, chapter one.
Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer. The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception. From Dialectic of Enlightenment, 1944.
Theodor Adorno. "Culture Industry Reconsidered."

From The Culture Industry: Selected Essays on Mass Culture. London: Routledge, 1991.

Supplementary Readings
Gilles Deleuze. Postscript on the Societies of Control.

Week 6


Required Readings
Brian Massumi. "Realer than real: The Simulacrum According to Deleuze and Guattari." Originally published in Copyright no.1, 1987.
Supplementary Readings
John McMurtry. Unequal Freedoms: The Global Market as an Ethical System.
Noam Chomsky. Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media.

Week 7


Required Readings
Michelle Chihara. "Naomi Klein Gets Global." Interview with Naomi Klein from AlterNet on September 25, 2002.
Supplementary Readings
Robert B. Reich. The Work of Nations: Preparing Ourselves for 21st-Century Capitalism.

Week 8


Required Readings
Plato. Philebus. Please read the following selections: 15a-18d and 23c-27c. Written 360 BCE; translated by Benjamin Jowett.
Click here to access the mp3 version (size: 6,416kb)
Supplementary Readings
Paul Hirst and Philip Bobbitt. "America First: The Case to Answer." Debate between Bobbitt and Hirst about the situation with Iraq and the U.S.A.
Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri. Empire. Download multiple versions of Empire online.
Interview with Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri on Wed, May 3, 2000, from Andreas Broeckmann at Netttime.