Credits: 30 credits
Semester: 1 and 2
Contact: Dr Nicholas Hostettler
‘Thinking Politically’ explores and develops modern ways of thinking about politics and political issues. It combines the exploration of modern and contemporary ideologies with the analysis of key political theories and concepts. The first part is a series of introductions to the thinking of the major modern political ideological traditions of liberalism, conservatism, socialism & Marxism, paying attention both to their historical development and contemporary manifestations. After looking at the nature of political concepts and theory the focus shifts to controversies about human nature, political order, liberties, equalities and the just distribution of social goods. As we explore debates over these issues, we shall be examining the ways in which these concepts are deployed within and by the different ideological traditions studied earlier. ‘Thinking Politically’ introduces students to political thinking: it demonstrates the value of political theory by helping students to use it to better understand and participate in today’s political debates.
Assessment: Critical Analysis (1,500 words) 20%, Coursework (2,500 words) 30%, Exam 50%