Political Philosophy PHIL5080
- Academic Session: 2023-24
- School: School of Humanities
- Credits: 20
- Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
- Typically Offered: Semester 1
- Available to Visiting Students: Yes
Political philosophy, in the broadest sense, concerns the question of how we should all live together as a society. It goes beyond morality and ethics in considering the structures of power within which individuals make their choices of how to live. Where the former asks 'What is the right thing to do?' or 'What is the good life?', political philosophy asks questions such as 'What does the just society look like?' Classic topics in political philosophy include the nature and scope of individual rights, the legitimacy of the state, justifications for democracy, the value of equality, liberty, and autonomy, and how to overcome oppression and injustice.
2 lectures per week for 9 weeks, plus 4 tutorials. The course may not run every year. Options running this year are available on MyCampus.
Two essays, equally weighted, each with a word limit of 2500 words. - 100%
This course aims to:
■ Introduce the central components of influential theories in political philosophy;
■ Familiarise students with the main positions and arguments within each topic;
■ Enable students to deploy these arguments for themselves.
Intended Learning Outcomes of Course
By the end of this course students will be able to:
■ Explain what political philosophy is;
■ Explain and critically assess major theories concerning topics such as the nature and scope of individual rights, the legitimacy of the state, justifications for democracy, the value of equality, liberty, and autonomy, and how to overcome oppression and injustice;
■ Apply political philosophical concepts to real world situations and personal experience;
■ Develop their own political philosophical positions in response to the literature, and back them up with careful and rigorous philosophical argument.
Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits
Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.