Fall/Winter Timetable

POL320Y1Y L0101

Modern Political Thought


This course looks at some of the most influential political theory texts of the 18th and 19th century. We focus on tensions, disputes, and contradictions contained within "modern" political thought. During the first term we concentrate on the issues raised by the clash between Enlightenment and Romantic thought. Here we read "pairs" of thinkers, e.g. Kant versus Herder, in order to draw out contrasts. During the second term, authors and texts will be divided into those that can be described as "modern" and those that reject the main defining features of modernity.


Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The Basic Political Writings, Hackett; Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France, Oxford; Immanuel Kant, Grounding of the Metaphysics of Morals, Cambridge; John Stuart Mill, On Liberty, Penguin Classics; Hegel, Elements of the Philosophy of Right, Cambridge; Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil, Vintage Books.,

Format and Requirements

Two papers and a final exam, each worth 33 1/3 %. Bonus marks for participation.


POL200Y1 or POL200Y5 or (POLC70H3, POLC71H3)

POLC73H3 or POLC74H3 or POL320Y5