Political theory

A.A. 2014/2015
6
Crediti massimi
40
Ore totali
SSD
SPS/04
Lingua
Inglese
Obiettivi formativi
The course primarily aims at providing students with a selective but intensive survey of the major disputes and problems that engage political theory. More precisely, on the one hand the course will focus on basic questions concerning the normative character of political theory, paying particular attention to its evaluative purposes, and on methodological issues with a view to clarify the meta-theoretical profile of political theory. On the other hand, the course is meant to offer an overview of the basic topics discussed in contemporary debates, in order to give a key to appreciate the specific import of political theory and to understand how the major paradigms of political theory work.
Programma e organizzazione didattica

Edizione unica

Responsabile
Periodo
Primo trimestre
STUDENTI FREQUENTANTI
Informazioni sul programma
Syllabus
Week 1
Lecture 1 - Political Theory: Tasks and Problems
· Plato, Apology of Socrates - 30e1-31a8
· Arendt, H. "Philosophy and Politics", Social Research , 71(3), 2004 - excerpts
· Rawls, J. "Four Roles of Political Philosophy", in Justice as Fairness: A Restatement, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press.
· Walzer, M. Spheres of Justice: A Defense of Pluralism and Equality, New York: Basic Books, 1983 - excerpt
· Cohen, G.A. Rescuing Justice and Equality, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press 2008 - excerpt
· Miller, D. "Political Philosophy for Earthlings", in D. Leopold and M. Stears (eds.) Political Theory. Methods and Approaches, Oxford: Oxford University Press 2008 - excerpt
· Miller, D. "Why Do We Need Political Philosophy", in Political Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003.
Lecture 2 - Political Theory: Evaluative Commitments
· Berlin, I. "Does Political Theory Still Exists?", in Concepts and Categories. Philosophical Essays, Oxford: Oxford University Press 1980.
· Besussi, A. "Philosophy and Politics", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate 2012.
· Nagel, T. The View from Nowhere, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986 - Introduction

Week 2
Lectures 3 and 4Lecture 4 - Presentations and Discussion

Week 3
Lecture 5 - Facts and Principles
· Ronzoni, M. "Facts and Principles", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate 2012.
· Miller, D. "Political Philosophy for Earthlings", in D. Leopold and M. Stears (eds.) Political Theory. Methods and Approaches, Oxford: Oxford University Press 2008 - excerpt
· Cohen, G.A. "Facts and Principles", Philosophy and Public Affairs, 2003 , 31(3) - excerpt

Lecture 6 - Feasibility and Desirability
· Nagel, T. "What Makes a Political Theory Utopian?", Social Research, 1989, 56(4).
· Galston, W.A. "Realism in Political Theory", European Journal of Political Theory, 9(4), 2010.
· Estlund, D. "Utopophobia" - excerpt
· Pasquali, F. "Feasibility and Desirability", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate 2012.

Week 4
Lectures 7 and 8 - Presentations and Discussion


Week 5
Lecture 9 - Justification
· Holder, C. "Justification", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate, 2012.
· D'Agostino, F. "Public Justification", Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2007.
· Chambers, S. "Theories of Political Justification", Philosophical Compass, 2010, 5(11).

Lecture 10 - Justice
· Barney, R. "Callicles and Traymachus", Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2011.
· Shklar, J. The Faces of Injustice, New Haven and London: Yale University Press - excerpts (1-19)
· Pogge, T. "Justice: Philosophical Aspects", International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences
· Sarat, A. "Injustice. Legal Aspects", International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Week 6
Lectures 11 and 12 - Presentations and Discussion

Week 7
Lecture 13 - The Rawlsian Paradigm 1
· Rawls, J. A Theory of Justice, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press 1971: §1-9; § 22-24; § 68
· Audard, C. John Rawls, Stocksfield: Acumen 2007 - pp. 1-24.
· Bloom, A. "John Rawls vs the Tradition of Political Philosophy", The American Political Science Review, 62 (9), 1975.
· Nagel, T. "Rawls on Justice", The Philosophical Review, 82 (2), 1973.
Lecture 14 - The Rawlsian Paradigm 2
· Rawls, J. Political Liberalism (expanded edition). New York: Columbia University Press 1993 -excerpts (xvi-xviii; lix-lx; xxv-xxvi)
· Mulhall S., Swift, Liberals and Communitarians. Oxford: Blackwell 1996 (chapter 5)
Week 8
Lectures 15 and 16 - Presentations and Discussion

Week 9
Lecture 17 - Communitarianism
· Sandel, M. "The Procedural Republic and the Unencumbered Self", Political Theory, 12 (1), 1984.
· Sandel, M. "Moral Argument and Liberal Toleration: Abortion and Homosexuality", in Public Philosophy. Essays on Morality and Politics, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press 2005.
· Nagel, T. "Progressive but not Liberal", The New York Review of Books , 25 May 2006.
· Sandel, M. - Nagel, T. "The case for Liberalism: an Exchange", The New York Review of Books, 5 October 2006.

Lecture 18 - Libertarianism
· Nozick, R. Anarchy State and Utopia, Oxford: Oxford University Press 1974: pp. 30-33, 35; 150-164.
· Rand, A. The Fountainhead, (excerpt)
· Nagel, T. "Libertarianism without Foundations", in J. Paul (ed.) Reading Nozick, Oxford: Blackwell, 1982.

Week 10
Lectures 19 and 20 - Presentations and Discussion

Please note The material for the course, including reading assignments, lectures notes and further useful information, will be available on Ariel, at the following address: http://ariel.ctu.unimi.it (Political theory)
Prerequisiti e modalità di esame
Students will be assessed on the basis of their performances in discussions and presentations. At the end of the course, students will be required to deliver an in-class written test. While the written test is meant to offer students the opportunity to show their knowledge about the issues addressed during the course, presentations aim to assess their capacity to present and critically discuss a topic, to propose original readings and insights about it, and to consistently defend their claims.
Final grades will be awarded by weighting participation, presentation and test as follow:

Participation 25 %
Presentations 35 %
Test 40 %
Unità didattica 1
Programma
In the first module particular attention will be paid the specific challenges connected to the normative attitude of political theory. As a normative - as opposed to descriptive - enterprise political theory is indeed committed to evaluate the desirability of observable states of affairs as well as to comparatively assess different possible states of the world. To similar ends, political theory puts forward standards whose reliability may be vindicated by endorsing different strategies for dealing with political facts, by pursuing different degrees of objectivity and by appealing to different understandings of justification.
Materiale didattico e bibliografia
Syllabus

Week 1
Lecture 1 - Political Theory: Tasks and Problems
· Plato, Apology of Socrates - 30e1-31a8
· Arendt, H. "Philosophy and Politics", Social Research , 71(3), 2004 - excerpts
· Rawls, J. "Four Roles of Political Philosophy", in Justice as Fairness: A Restatement, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press.
· Walzer, M. Spheres of Justice: A Defense of Pluralism and Equality, New York: Basic Books, 1983 - excerpt
· Cohen, G.A. Rescuing Justice and Equality, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press 2008 - excerpt
· Miller, D. "Political Philosophy for Earthlings", in D. Leopold and M. Stears (eds.) Political Theory. Methods and Approaches, Oxford: Oxford University Press 2008 - excerpt
· Miller, D. "Why Do We Need Political Philosophy", in Political Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003.
Lecture 2 - Political Theory: Evaluative Commitments
· Berlin, I. "Does Political Theory Still Exists?", in Concepts and Categories. Philosophical Essays, Oxford: Oxford University Press 1980.
· Besussi, A. "Philosophy and Politics", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate 2012.
· Nagel, T. The View from Nowhere, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1986 - Introduction

Week 2
Lectures 3 and 4Lecture 4 - Presentations and Discussion

Week 3
Lecture 5 - Facts and Principles
· Ronzoni, M. "Facts and Principles", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate 2012.
· Miller, D. "Political Philosophy for Earthlings", in D. Leopold and M. Stears (eds.) Political Theory. Methods and Approaches, Oxford: Oxford University Press 2008 - excerpt
· Cohen, G.A. "Facts and Principles", Philosophy and Public Affairs, 2003 , 31(3) - excerpt

Lecture 6 - Feasibility and Desirability
· Nagel, T. "What Makes a Political Theory Utopian?", Social Research, 1989, 56(4).
· Galston, W.A. "Realism in Political Theory", European Journal of Political Theory, 9(4), 2010.
· Berlin, I. "The Pursuit of the Ideal", in The Crooked Timber of Humanity. Chapters in the History of Ideas, London: John Murray 1990.
· Pasquali, F. "Feasibility and Desirability", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate 2012.

Week 4
Lectures 7 and 8 - Presentations and Discussion

Week 5
Lecture 9 - Justification
· Holder, C. "Justification", in A. Besussi (ed.) A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Farnham: Ashgate, 2012.
· D'Agostino, F. "Public Justification", Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2007.
· Chambers, S. "Theories of Political Justification", Philosophical Compass, 2010, 5(11).

Lecture 10 - Justice
· Barney, R. "Callicles and Traymachus", Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2011.
· Shklar, J. The Faces of Injustice, New Haven and London: Yale University Press - excerpts (1-19)
· Pogge, T. "Justice: Philosophical Aspects", International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences
· Sarat, A. "Injustice. Legal Aspects", International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Please note The material for the course, including reading assignments, lectures notes and further useful information, will be available on Ariel, at the following address: http://ariel.ctu.unimi.it (Political theory)
Unità didattica 2
Programma
In the second module the course will explore some major paradigms in contemporary political theory. The analysis of the selected paradigms - Rawls's liberalism, communitarianism and libertarianism - will familiarize students with substantive questions concerning, among others, liberty and justice. Moreover, the exam of the selected paradigms will allow the students to see the methodological issues addressed in the first module at work. Accordingly, students will gain clues, not only about the substantive content of the selected theories, but also about how to approach political theories and about how to assess their merits and limits.
Materiale didattico e bibliografia
Syllabus

Week 6
Lectures 11 and 12 - Presentations and Discussion

Week 7
Lecture 13 - The Rawlsian Paradigm 1
· Rawls, J. A Theory of Justice, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press 1971: §1-9; § 22-24; § 68
· Audard, C. John Rawls, Stocksfield: Acumen 2007 - pp. 1-24.
· Bloom, A. "John Rawls vs the Tradition of Political Philosophy", The American Political Science Review, 62 (9), 1975.
· Nagel, T. "Rawls on Justice", The Philosophical Review, 82 (2), 1973.
Lecture 14 - The Rawlsian Paradigm 2
· Rawls, J. Political Liberalism (expanded edition). New York: Columbia University Press 1993 -excerpts (xvi-xviii; lix-lx; xxv-xxvi)
· Mulhall S., Swift, Liberals and Communitarians. Oxford: Blackwell 1996 (chapter 5)

Week 8
Lectures 15 and 16 - Presentations and Discussion

Week 9
Lecture 17 - Communitarianism
· Sandel, M. "The Procedural Republic and the Unencumbered Self", Political Theory, 12 (1), 1984.
· Sandel, M. "Moral Argument and Liberal Toleration: Abortion and Homosexuality", in Public Philosophy. Essays on Morality and Politics, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press 2005.
· Nagel, T. "Progressive but not Liberal", The New York Review of Books , 25 May 2006.
· Sandel, M. - Nagel, T. "The case for Liberalism: an Exchange", The New York Review of Books, 5 October 2006.

Lecture 18 - Libertarianism
· Nozick, R. Anarchy State and Utopia, Oxford: Oxford University Press 1974: pp. 30-33, 35; 150-164.
· Rand, A. The Fountainhead, (excerpt)
· Nagel, T. "Libertarianism without Foundations", in J. Paul (ed.) Reading Nozick, Oxford: Blackwell, 1982.

Week 10
Lectures 19 and 20 - Presentations and Discussion

Please note The material for the course, including reading assignments, lectures notes and further useful information, will be available on Ariel, at the following address: http://ariel.ctu.unimi.it (Political theory)
STUDENTI NON FREQUENTANTI
Prerequisiti e modalità di esame
For non-attendant students the exam is divided into two parts: a written test and an oral examination (provided the written test is passed).The written test and the oral examination contributes to the final mark each for 50%.
Unità didattica 1
Programma
The same
Materiale didattico e bibliografia
NON-ATTENDANT STUDENTS

● Material for the written test

The two following books:

- Besussi, A. (ed.), A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2012, the following chapters:

1. "Philosophy and Politics"
3. "Objectivity"
4. "Feasibility and Desirability"
6. "Realism and Idealism"
7. "Politics/Metaphysics
9. "Justification"
10. "The Right and the Good"
13. "Liberty"
14. "Equality"
15. "Community"
16. "Justice"
17. "Pluralism"
18. "Public Discourse"

- Mulhall, S. and Swift, A., Liberals & Communitarians. An Introduction, Second Edition, Oxford: Blackwell, 1996, the following chapters:

"Introduction: Rawls's Original Position"
"Introduction to Part I"
1. "Sandel: The Limits of Liberalism"
4. "Walzer: Justice and Abstraction"
"Introduction to Part II"
5. "Rawls's Political Liberalism"
6. "Political Liberalism and the Communitarian Critique"
7. "Political Liberalism: Political or Comprehensive?"

● Material for the oral examination

One book among the following ones:

- Sandel, M., Liberalism and the Limits of Justice, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982, the following chapters:

- "Introduction: Liberalism and the Primacy of Justice
1. "Justice and the Moral Subject"
2. "Possession, Desert, and Distributive Justice"
3. "Contract Theory and Justification"
4. "Justice and the Good"
- "Conclusions: Liberalism and the Limits of Justice"

- Rawls, J., Collected Papers, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press, 1999, the following chapters:

3. "Justice as Fairness"
5. "The Sense of Justice"
9. "The Justification of Civil Disobedience"
10. "Justice as Reciprocity"
14. "Fairness to Goodness"
18. "Justice as Fairness: Political not Metaphysical"
21. "The Priority of Right and Ideas of the Good"

- Walzer, M., Thinking Politically. Essays in Political Theory, New Haven-London: Yale University Press, 2007, the following chapters:

1. "Philosophy and Democracy"
3. "Objectivity and Social Meaning"
4. "Liberalism and the Art of Separation"
7. "The Communitarian Critique to Liberalism"
10. "Drawing the Line: Religion and Politics"
12. "Nation and Universe"
17. "Political Action: The Problem of Dirty Hands"

- Nagel, T., Equality and Partiality, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991, the following chapters:

1. "Introduction"
2. "Two Standpoints"
3. "The Problem of Utopianism"
4. "Legitimacy and Unanimity"
5. "Kant's Test"
7. "Egalitarianism"
13. "Rights"
14. "Toleration"
15. "Limits: The World"
Unità didattica 2
Programma
The same
Materiale didattico e bibliografia
● Material for the written test

The two following books:

- Besussi, A. (ed.), A Companion to Political Philosophy. Methods, Tools, Topics, Aldershot: Ashgate, 2012, the following chapters:

1. "Philosophy and Politics"
3. "Objectivity"
4. "Feasibility and Desirability"
6. "Realism and Idealism"
7. "Politics/Metaphysics
9. "Justification"
10. "The Right and the Good"
13. "Liberty"
14. "Equality"
15. "Community"
16. "Justice"
17. "Pluralism"
18. "Public Discourse"

- Mulhall, S. and Swift, A., Liberals & Communitarians. An Introduction, Second Edition, Oxford: Blackwell, 1996, the following chapters:

"Introduction: Rawls's Original Position"
"Introduction to Part I"
1. "Sandel: The Limits of Liberalism"
4. "Walzer: Justice and Abstraction"
"Introduction to Part II"
5. "Rawls's Political Liberalism"
6. "Political Liberalism and the Communitarian Critique"
7. "Political Liberalism: Political or Comprehensive?"

● Material for the oral examination

One book among the following ones:

- Sandel, M., Liberalism and the Limits of Justice, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982, the following chapters:

- "Introduction: Liberalism and the Primacy of Justice
1. "Justice and the Moral Subject"
2. "Possession, Desert, and Distributive Justice"
3. "Contract Theory and Justification"
4. "Justice and the Good"
- "Conclusions: Liberalism and the Limits of Justice"

- Rawls, J., Collected Papers, Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press, 1999, the following chapters:

3. "Justice as Fairness"
5. "The Sense of Justice"
9. "The Justification of Civil Disobedience"
10. "Justice as Reciprocity"
14. "Fairness to Goodness"
18. "Justice as Fairness: Political not Metaphysical"
21. "The Priority of Right and Ideas of the Good"

- Walzer, M., Thinking Politically. Essays in Political Theory, New Haven-London: Yale University Press, 2007, the following chapters:

1. "Philosophy and Democracy"
3. "Objectivity and Social Meaning"
4. "Liberalism and the Art of Separation"
7. "The Communitarian Critique to Liberalism"
10. "Drawing the Line: Religion and Politics"
12. "Nation and Universe"
17. "Political Action: The Problem of Dirty Hands"

- Nagel, T., Equality and Partiality, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991, the following chapters:

1. "Introduction"
2. "Two Standpoints"
3. "The Problem of Utopianism"
4. "Legitimacy and Unanimity"
5. "Kant's Test"
7. "Egalitarianism"
13. "Rights"
14. "Toleration"
15. "Limits: The World"
Moduli o unità didattiche
Unità didattica 1
SPS/04 - SCIENZA POLITICA - CFU: 3
Lezioni: 20 ore

Unità didattica 2
SPS/04 - SCIENZA POLITICA - CFU: 3
Lezioni: 20 ore

Docente/i
Ricevimento:
Nel I trimestre 2019-2020 il ricevimento sarà martedi 15-17. NB il ricevimento di martedi 1o dicembre è spostato a mercoledi 11 stessa ora
Ufficio 209 - II Piano - Via Passione 13