PS227 – History of Political Thought

Lecture:WE:15:00-18:00(CBL-B-203 – B203)

Office Hours:Wednesdays 14.00-15.00 by appointment face to face / online (optional)

Textbook / Readings

Other Materials A HISTORY OF WESTERN POLITICAL THOUGHT, J.S.McClelland, Routledge, 1996.

Course Objectives 1. Identify the evolution and the historical transformation of political ideas and concepts. 2. Compare and contrast the political arguments and approaches by different political philosophers. 3. Understand the mindset of the thinkers who produce basic ideas in the history of political thought 4. Discuss various themes (i.e. power, liberty, justice, equality, democracy, citizenship, government, and the state) and philosophers (i.e. Sophists, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Augustinus, Aquinas, Machiavelli, Locke, Hobbes, Rousseau, Hegel,Marx, Nietzsche and Foucault)

Course Contents:  Examination of ancient Greek, Roman, and Medieval and Modern political thinkers, the analysis of their major contributions to the development of modern political theory. The essence and nature of concepts and themes related to political theories. We will start with a biographical sketch of the thinker, a list of their key texts, and their key ideas.

 Weekly Plan (Click the page numbers for course slides that will be uploaded after the course)

1. (Introduction ) Intro to Ancient Political Thought Getting familiar with the course content, methodology and course requirements. Introduction to Ancient Sources: Part 1. Chapters: 2. & 3., Sophists (pp. 23-54) 

2. (Ancient Greek Political Thought, Philosophy And Theory ) Part 1 The Polis : Chapters 4. & 5.,Plato and Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, Aristotle    , Aristotle 2 (pp. 54-94.)

3. ( Medieval Political Thought, Philosophy And Theory) Part 2. Two Kingdoms: Chapters 6. &7., Intro to Mediveal Age and Augustinus   Aquinas (pp. 95-124)

4. Argumentative analysis: Comparison between Ancients and Medieval Thinkers Review: Discussion Material and Videos:  Why Socrates Hated Democracy? Plato, Aristotle, Augustinus, Aquinas

5. Midterm Week Evaluation: Classical Exam

6. (Renaissance Philosophy and Modern Politics) Part 2. Two Kingdoms: Chapter 8. Machiavelli and Realism (pp. 125-139)

7. Introduction to Enlightenment, Modern Political Thought & Social Contract Theories Part III. Rationalist Enlightenment: Chapter 10. Hobbes (pp. 163-181)

8. Introduction to Enlightenment, Modern Political Thought & Social Contract Theories Part III. Rationalist Enlightenment: Chapter 11 and 14. , Locke( pp. 181-198) and Rousseau (pp 235-253.)  SC philosophers Compared

10.Revolutionary Ideas  Women in politics , Mary Wollstonecraft Part III. Rationalist Enlightenment: Chapter 22-23. Hegel Intro and  Hegel and Early Marx (pp. 383-419.)

12. Critics of Modern Thought Part III. Rationalist Enlightenment: Chapter 24-25. Marx and Nietzsche ( 416-453.)

13. Critical Theories and General Review Part IV. 20th century: Chapters 27 and 29. Habermas (pp.480-496) and Foucault (pp.516-537)