Fall/Winter Timetable

JPR457H1F L0101

Graduate Course Code: JPR2057H1F L0101

Democracy and the Secular


The contemporary resurgence of religion in the public sphere and in political discourse and practice demands a critical reappraisal of the relationship between the religious and the political. This seminar in political theory will explore contemporary dilemmas of democracy, sovereignty, violence and terror from the point of view of political theology. If there is a nexus that binds the theological to the political in contemporary politics, is there, or should there be, a way to sever it? How can the exploration of this relationship enable us not only to undertake a critique of religion, but also appreciate the ways in which the religious or theological can contribute to a critique of politics? This inquiry entails more than an attempt to reunite a secular politics with ethics; rather, it requires a critical engagement with the onto-theological nature of contemporary political forms and concepts. Readings will be taken from: Schmitt, Benjamin, Taubes, Lefort, Agamben, Derrida, Caputo, Habermas, Nancy, Badiou.


POL 320Y or a 300-level course in Philosophy or Philosophy of Religion or Anthropology of Religion.


POL 320Y1 or permission of the instructor

POL 485H1S, section L0201 (taken in 2008-09)