College Of Arts And Sciences | Liberty and Its Enemies
E104 | 0138 | Furniss

	In this course we will take a look at the troubled boundary between
the value of individual liberty and the requirements of a democratic
society.  Within prescribed limits we cherish the freedom to do and say what
we want, and we often, if not always, acknowledge the responsibilities
associated with this freedom.  But at the same time for most of us
individual liberty is not a solitary value.  Does the exercise of our
freedoms make sense only within the framework of a democratic nation and a
pluralist society?  Is individual liberty an end in itself?  How do we face
the dilemma posed so well by Hillel:
If I am not for myself, then who will be for me
If I am only for myself, then what am I for
This seminar explores these questions from a number of perspectives.  We
begin with John Stuart Mill's famous treatise, On Liberty, and its relation
to American political values and political life.  We then look at a number
of objections and reformulations of this position.  We conclude by examining
the extent to which the post-war German experience offers a way to reconcile
liberty with democratic order.