Political Ideas: Introduction to Political Theory

POLS 2130 (3)

This course offers an introductory survey of political theory. Emphasis is placed on (1) textual analysis of primary sources and on (2) scholarly analysis of the foundational questions and methods central to the academic study of political ideas. Studying political ideas involves thinking about a) the very definition of political theory itself, b) what one would need to know in order to make evidence- based claims about political theory texts and c) why and how the study of political theory leads political scientists into the exploration of “essentially contested concepts.” More specifically, throughout the semester, we will explore questions relating to 1) what is the definition of political theory; 2) why/how are interpretative disputes at the core of political theory and 3) how have major political theories/ideas—democracy, liberalism, conservatism, socialism, liberation theory, and fascism—changed and developed over time? In sum, this is a survey course on the history of political ideas. (C)

{Fall, Spring}

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MSC11 6325
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131

Phone: (505) 277-8900
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