Political Science | Modern Political Ideologies
Y281 | 25742 | Craiutu

Two factors above all others have shaped the course of modern
history in the past two centuries. The first is the development of
sciences and technology; the second consists in the development of
political ideologies that have altered radically the political
landscape of modernity. For most of the twentieth century, the clash
between liberalism, conservatism, fascism, socialism, and communism
dominated world politics. The proponents of these doctrines put
forward comprehensive agendas for social and political change and
affected the lives of millions of people This course will offer a
critical evaluation of main ideologies by focusing on key
theoretical texts that have served as blueprints for political
action. At the same time, we shall also analyze the programs and
agendas of contemporary political parties drawing on these
doctrines. The readings for this class include representative
selections from Locke, Rousseau, The Federalist Papers, Burke, Marx,
Mill, Hayek, Oakeshott, Giddens, Dahl, and Allan Bloom. Finally, we
shall explore briefly the literature on the end of ideologies, the
relevance of the classical categories of Left and Right, and the
doctrine of the “Third Way.” Students will be required to write a
final project assessing the relevance or irrelevance of political
doctrines to our present concerns and challenges.