POLITICAL SCIENCE 325, Political Thought, Fall 2013


The Assignments Page


Dead Week.  December 9 & 11.  This week we will (a) discuss issues in your papers, and (b) discuss expectations for the final essay.  All must show up!  You may bring to class suggestions for questions on the final essay. 


Nov. 18.   Wolin, chapter fourteen.  Liberalism and rationalism.  Be able to answer the reading questions, and Prepare (and bring to class on paper) answers to questions 9, 12, and 14. 


Nov. 20.  Read Wolin, chapter fifteen.  Liberal justice and political democracy.  Bring to class on paper answers to questions 2, 4, and 11.  #11 is the most important one here.  We will discuss this at some length.



Nov. 11.  Read Wolin, chapter twelve.  Marx.  Prepare (and bring to class on paper) answers to questions 4, 6, 8, 12, and 15.  15 involves drawing a diagram. 


Nov. 13.  Read Nov. 8.  Wolin, chapter thirteen.  Nietzsche.  This is an important chapter in WolinÕs book.  Please bring written answers to questions 1, 6, 7, 10, and 11, but do understand the claims referred to in the other questions.



[note slight change of syllabus this week]


Monday, Nov. 4.  Postmodern Power.  Read Wolin chapter eleven. Postmodern power.  Today and Wednesday we will discuss the questions for this chapter, and watch the documentary Inside Job.  You will be asked to apply the concepts to an analysis of power as depicted in the film. 


Wednesday, Nov. 6.  Same subject, continued.  Also today, bring to class the first three pages of your paper. This will demonstrate your approach to the question, show how you use text evidence, and help focus attention on writing issues.  You will read and comment on at least one of your peersÕ papers. 


Monday, October 28.  Read Locke, selections.  The full text of his Second Treatise is here.  If you wish to use a Word version, check Sakai.  You should be able to answer the Locke questions. 


Wednesday, October 30.  Read Wolin, Chapter 10, Organizations.  Bring notes for all questions, and clear answers to questions 2, 9, 10, and 17. 


Monday, October 21.  Read Wolin, chapter nine, Liberalism.  Please bring to class written answers to questions 1, 5, 6, 9, and 14.  Be sure you understand all the questions, as well.  Please ask yourself whether religion plays the role Wolin lays out for "conformity."  Also, bring to class two pages of your paper, in which you use text evidence to develop a claim.  We will have a workshop on using text evidence to support a claim.  You will read and comment upon two of your peersÕ papers.


Wednesday, October 23.  Midterm Examination.  The questions and instructions will be posted the evening of the 21st. 


Monday, October 14.  Read Wolin, chapter seven, Machiavelli.  Please bring answers to class on paper for questions 2, 4 and 6.  If you look at an online bookseller like Amazon and search for "machiavelli for", what kinds of things do you find on the first few pages?


Wednesday, October 16.  Read Wolin, chapter eight, Hobbes.  Please bring answers to class on papers for questions 4, 6, 7 and 9.  Remember that next Monday, Oct. 21, you are to bring to class the first two pages of your paper.  Today we will discuss developing a critical perspective for your paper. 


Monday, October 7.  Read Wolin, chapter five, Luther.  Please bring answers on paper to questions 4 & 7.  Bring questions and responses about any of the others that are not clear or are particularly interesting.


Wednesday, October 9.  Read Wolin, chapter six, Calvin.  Please bring answers on paper to (at least) questions 4 & 7.  Also, read God_Caesar_America.pdf, found in Sakai.  On paper (about one page) evaluate the argument from CalvinÕs perspective. 



Monday, September 30.  Read Wolin, chapter three, "Age of Empire."  Work through the reading questions, and bring to class, on paper, answers to questions 8, 10 and 12.


Wednesday, October 2.  Read Wolin, Chapter Four, "Early Christian Era."  Work through the reading questions, and bring to class, on paper, answers to questions 1, 5, 10, 14. 


Monday, Sept. 23.  Read Aristotle, selections.  It is found in Sakai.  Bring to class your notes for the reading questions.


Wednesday, Sept. 25.  Read Epictetus, The Enchiridion, found in Sakai.  Bring on paper to class, answers to these questions: (1) Is philosophy open to all of us?  (2) What can it do for us?  Wolin discusses Stoics at pp. 71-5.  (3) Do you agree with WolinÕs account of the Stoics, particularly about their limitations?  For a more supportive reading of Epictetus for comparison, see this document. 



Monday, Sept. 16.  Read Okin, found in Sakai.  She says there are four types of thinking about women in theories of justice.  What are they?  Pick two of the philosophers she includes and describe the particular ways they make justice claims about women.  Bring written answers to these questions to class. 


Wednesday, Sept. 18.  Read Wolin, chapter two.  Plato.  Bring notes for all of the reading questions, and written answers to questions 4, 8, and 10.