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School of Politics and International Relations

POL368 Socialist Political Thought

(POL368A - Autumn)

Level: 6

Semester: A

Credit Value: 15

Module Convenor: Dr Madeleine Davis

Overlap: None

Pre-requisite: POL100 or POL110

Compulsory for: None

Associate Availability: Full Year and Autumn


Socialism, described by Albert Einstein as humanity's attempt 'to overcome and advance beyond the predatory phase of human development', has historically provided the most important ideological and political alternative to capitalism and liberalism. This module examines some core ideas in the history of socialist thought through a close reading of selected primary texts. Themes to be addressed (which may vary from year to year) include: utopia; community; class, ownership and control; equality; democracy.  The second part of the course examines the post-war reformulation of socialist thought in response to perceived challenges around class, culture and identity, and asks: is socialism still relevant to contemporary problems? 

Assessment: 1 x 1,500 word Essay (30%), 1 x 2,500 word Essay (70%)