Honors | Introduction to Political Philosophy
Y105 | 10220 | Russell Hanson
What is politics? What do individuals owe their government? What
does government owe its citizens? What would a just government look
like, and what would we have to do to attain it? These are among
the questions that have preoccupied political theorists for
centuries. This course is designed to acquaint you with some of the
answers political theorists have given. Among the answers weíll
consider are those from Platoís Republic, Machiavelliís The Prince,
Hobbesís Leviathan, Lockeís Second Treatise of Government,
Rousseauís Social Contract, Millís Essay on Liberty, The Communist
Manifesto, and some contemporary thinkers, as well.
The reading will average about 100 pages per week, some of it
difficult. Students will write two short (3 pp.) papers, and take
midterm and final exams. There may also be a small number of pop
quizzes or in-class assignments.
Students enrolled in the Honors Discussion Section will meet to
discuss books, films and current events, and they will occasionally
venture out into the real world, or at least Bloomington, to see
political philosophy in action.