Political Science | Liberty and its Enemies
Y200 | 29882 | Furniss
In this course we will explore the trade-offs between the value of
individual liberty and the presumed requirements of a decent society
and a democratic political order. What are our responsibilities to
our families, our society, our country? What restrictions on our
liberties might be warranted in the name of family cohesion, social
harmony or national defense? On the other side what are the dangers
that social, economic, or political forces and demands might
overwhelm our personal freedoms?
We begin considering these and related questions with John
Stuart Mill’s famous treatise, On Liberty. We pay specific attention
to how Mill’s ideas have shaped our understanding of First Amendment
rights. We next investigate the proposition, “no liberty for the
enemies of liberty.” Our focus will be on Germany and the United
States. Our major text is Rosenbaum, Explaining Hitler. We conclude
the course by putting our ideas to work in trying to identify the
major issues in the troubled relationship between the liberty and
homeland security in post 9/11 America. Our major text is Dershowitz,
Why Terrorism Works.
There will be two examinations and a number of quizzes. There
will be no final examination.