AP/POLS2900 6.0 A: Perspectives on Politics

Offered by: POLS

(Cross-listed to: AP/PPAS2900 6.0A )


Summer 2019






Calendar Description / Prerequisite / Co-Requisite

Examines answers to critical questions concerning the nature and purposes of political life though a survey of classical works from Western political thought.

Course Website

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    Additional Course Instructor/Contact Details

OFFICE: S623 Ross
CONTACT: mmawhin@yorku.ca

    Expanded Course Description

This course develops a general model of the state and the political system through a survey of the principle texts of the leading philosophers in the tradition of western political theory, from classical Athens to the nineteenth century: Plato, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Wollstonecraft and J.S. Mill. Through a study of these writings, the concepts of justice and the good life, virtue, freedom, equality, citizenship and political obligation will be explored. The roots of contemporary political values, such as human rights, economic justice, democracy and personal liberty will also be examined. Emphasis will be placed on understanding political theories within larger philosophical frameworks and against their historical backgrounds. In addition, the continued relevance of these theories to contemporary political thought will be considered.

    Weighting of Course

Grade Breakdown:

Short Essay (3-4 pages) 15%
Mid-term Test (in-class) 15%
Longer Essay (6-8 pages) 30%
Final Exam (Exam Period) 25%
Participation (Tutorial) 15%

    Relevant Links / Resources