Semester: 1 and 2
Module Convenor: Dr Nicholas Hostettler
Description: This module combines an introduction to modern and contemporary ideologies with an analysis of key political concepts. It begins by examining conceptions of politics and the political, with particular attention to what it might mean to approach politics normatively/critically and through a range of theoretical perspectives. Next, the module introduces modern political ideologies (including liberalism, socialism, conservatism, and anarchism), paying attention to their historical development and contemporary manifestations. The focus then shifts to an analysis of key political concepts (including human nature, liberty, democracy, justice, equality, and rights), examining the ways in which these concepts are deployed within and by the different ideological traditions studied earlier. The emphasis throughout is upon relating the theoretical material to contemporary political movements and questions, and the module closes by addressing a series of contemporary issues (these will vary from year to year but may include identity, multiculturalism, property, and the environment) that demonstrate the uses of political theory today.
Assessment: Item 1: 20% Portfolio 1
Item 2: 10% In-class test
Item 3: 30% Portfolio 2
Item 4: 40% Examination (3 hours)