Jun 22, 2024  
Course Catalog 2021-2022 
Course Catalog 2021-2022 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

POLS 217 - Medieval Political Thought

This course discusses a set of themes that have historically shaped the constellation of medieval political thought. In many a medieval political thinker’s view, God is overwhelmingly present in both spheres of nature and politics. Therefore, one may justifiably argue that the post-Renaissance idea of politics, which resonates with our modern ears, breaks with the medieval notion of politics-god relationship. Through the course of the semester, we inquire into the idea of citizenship in the city of God; learn about the relationship between moral values and political practices; and, study the relevance of theology for politics in the medieval period. Likewise, our studies of such concepts as justice and power; civic and religious obligations; the form of governance; religious [in-]tolerance; and, tyranny prepare us for a better understanding of some early modern political ideas such as regicide and revolution—as well as the emergence of the modern State—at the end of our intellectual journey. The course is constructed around the following goals: (A) Exposure to a range of political ideas which may help us to rethink our present-day understandings of politics. And, (B) the recognition of the basic ideas (about politics and civic virtues) that separate our modern “commonsensical” vision of human condition from the medieval conceptions of noble life and politics.

Credits 1

Social Sciences

Social Science

Compass Attributes
Social Science, Structure/Power/Inequality, Taylor and Lane Scholars