
 “a strife of interest
masquerading as a contest
of principles”
 He speaks for the cynics
 But in politics, we cannot...

It is the serious search for comprehensive knowledge or
wisdom about political things.
Political philosophy can be defin...

Pursuit
of
power
Best
social
arrange-
ments
Human
conflict
Who
should
govern
Moral
foundations of
legitimacy,
liberty,
e...

Descriptive dimension
The aspect of philosophy that describe
how things are
The six issues require a comprehensive
kn...

 Prescriptive or normative dimension
 The aspect of political philosophy that prescribes how
things ought to be
 The ...

The facts that we identify as worth
describing in the human condition
profoundly affect our evaluations and
prescriptio...

It begins with the assumption that such public
questions as obedience to the law, the best
possible government, or the ...
Political
Science
predominantly deals with existing
states of affairs, and insofar as it is
possible to be amoral in its
...

The Problem: Its Diagnosis
and Prescription

Conflict
Source of
political
conflict:
DIFFERENCES
Religion
Gender
class
Eco-
nomic
interests
Race
Social
status

 Edmund Burke:
 “the bulk of mankind are not excessively
curious concerning any theories whilst
they are really happy;...

 Many of the great or epic
political philosophers have
pursued their inquiries as a
result of profound social
conflict ...

Conflict
Examples:
Plato’s philosophy
resulted from
Socrates’ death
St. Augustine’s
from the fall of
Rome
Machiavell...

 Contemporary political philosophies have resulted
from:
 The Nazi Holocaust
 Crisis of liberal democracy
 Emergence...

Political philosophies of the past emerged
as a result of particular historical irritant; yet their
texts also transcen...

Philosophical
approach to politics
Helps us to seek
knowledge of the real
complexity of human
needs, aspirations, and
re...

Philosophy and
Diagnosis
 Political philosophers provide a comprehensive
vision of the political when they raise questi...

Philosophy and
Diagnosis
 For example:
 Hobbes examines human
passions
 Plato on differences as the basis
for justice...

Philosophy and
Diagnosis
 Political philosophers are not satisfied in simply
describing public disorder or discontent;
...

Political Philosophy and Political
Therapy
 The political philosopher offers
his or her prescription or therapy
by iden...

Political Philosophy and Political
Therapy
 Some questions raise by philosophers:
1. Which is the best form of governme...

Political Philosophy and Political
Therapy
 There are conflicting norms among political
philosophers like
 Plato’s “ju...

 To Leo Strauss:
Human beings will never create a society
free of contradictions – perhaps even
including contradictor...

In Summary
Political philosophy has factual
(descriptive), diagnostic (causal),
and evaluative (prescriptive)
dimensions

The major questions
Any political thinker is open to the
possibility of truth regarding:
Wisdom
about
nature of
the
cosm...

The major questions
 What is the ultimate reality? Is it spirit of matter?
 Is the universe ordered or chaotic?
 Does...

The major questions
 Is the universe inclined toward good and the just, as
St. Thomas Aquinas claims, or is it devoid o...

End
Polsc22 1 introduction to political philosophy
of 29

Polsc22 1 introduction to political philosophy

An introduction to ancient and medieval political philosophy.
Published on: Mar 4, 2016
Published in: Education      
Source: www.slideshare.net


Transcripts - Polsc22 1 introduction to political philosophy

  • 1.   “a strife of interest masquerading as a contest of principles”  He speaks for the cynics  But in politics, we cannot avoid questions of truth or falsity, good or bad.  He is partly wrong;  Politics is also the contest of moral principles As defined by Ambrose Bierce… Antisthesis – The Father of Cynicism
  • 2.  It is the serious search for comprehensive knowledge or wisdom about political things. Political philosophy can be defined as philosophical reflection on how best to arrange our collective life - our political institutions and our social practices, such as our economic system and our pattern of family life. (David Miller) Political Philosophy
  • 3.  Pursuit of power Best social arrange- ments Human conflict Who should govern Moral foundations of legitimacy, liberty, equality, justice & human rights State, its nature, purpose, & limits Problems dealt in Political Philosophy
  • 4.  Descriptive dimension The aspect of philosophy that describe how things are The six issues require a comprehensive knowledge of the facts about human nature and human social relationships Dimensions of Political Philosophy
  • 5.   Prescriptive or normative dimension  The aspect of political philosophy that prescribes how things ought to be  The need of knowledge concerning principles of evaluation that enable us to construct and apply a standard to judge politics Dimensions of Political Philosophy
  • 6.  The facts that we identify as worth describing in the human condition profoundly affect our evaluations and prescriptions What we establish as a sound basis for prescription leads us to focus on certain facts concerning the human condition. How are two dimensions related with each other?
  • 7.  It begins with the assumption that such public questions as obedience to the law, the best possible government, or the justice of public policies are in need of justification. It is possible only in world where ends collide. – Sir Isaiah Berlin It is an attempt to truly know both the nature of political things and the right to the good political order. – Leo Strauss Political Philosophy
  • 8. Political Science predominantly deals with existing states of affairs, and insofar as it is possible to be amoral in its descriptions, it seeks a positive analysis of social affairs Examples: constitutional issues, voting behavior, the balance of power, the effect of judicial review Political Philosophy generates visions of the good social life: of what ought to be the ruling set of values and institutions that combine men and women together connects readily with various branches and sub-disciplines of philosophy including philosophy of law and of economics Political Science and Political Philosophy
  • 9.  The Problem: Its Diagnosis and Prescription
  • 10.  Conflict Source of political conflict: DIFFERENCES Religion Gender class Eco- nomic interests Race Social status
  • 11.   Edmund Burke:  “the bulk of mankind are not excessively curious concerning any theories whilst they are really happy; and one symptom of an ill-conducted state is the propensity of the people to resort to them.” Conflict
  • 12.   Many of the great or epic political philosophers have pursued their inquiries as a result of profound social conflict and decay .  Their political philosophies and comprehensive visions… “are like pearls: they are not produced without an irritant” (Thomas Spragens) Conflict St. Thomas Aquinas
  • 13.  Conflict Examples: Plato’s philosophy resulted from Socrates’ death St. Augustine’s from the fall of Rome Machiavelli’s from Italy’s disunity Hobbes’s from the English Civil War
  • 14.   Contemporary political philosophies have resulted from:  The Nazi Holocaust  Crisis of liberal democracy  Emergence of bureaucratic state  Globalization  Gender inequality  Political correctness  Nuclear proliferation  Terrorism  Various threats to individual liberty Conflict
  • 15.  Political philosophies of the past emerged as a result of particular historical irritant; yet their texts also transcend their own times and continue to challenge contemporary political thinkers and partisans to consider the richness of their alternative teachings as part of our contemporary dialogues about our own problems. Conflict
  • 16.  Philosophical approach to politics Helps us to seek knowledge of the real complexity of human needs, aspirations, and relationships Historical approach to politics Most useful in helping us understand the “irritants” that contributed to political philosophers’ desires to write texts with comprehensive visions Conflict
  • 17.  Philosophy and Diagnosis  Political philosophers provide a comprehensive vision of the political when they raise questions and provide (often tentative) answers about the most important factors that cause:  conflict  disorder  corruption  violence  terrorism  exploitation and  revolution
  • 18.  Philosophy and Diagnosis  For example:  Hobbes examines human passions  Plato on differences as the basis for justice  Machiavelli focuses on human deception and its relevance to successful political leadership  Marx addresses the role that economic inequality and class conflict play in forming political system. NICCOLO MACHIAVELLI
  • 19.  Philosophy and Diagnosis  Political philosophers are not satisfied in simply describing public disorder or discontent;  They seek to diagnose the causes of human conflict  Thomas Spargens puts it:  “the causal analysis which a political theorist provides in his examination of the sources of political disorder decisively shapes his prescriptive conclusion. Sound diagnoses must precede beneficial therapy.”
  • 20.  Political Philosophy and Political Therapy  The political philosopher offers his or her prescription or therapy by identifying appropriate norms or standards, which help to resolve or diminish human social conflicts, thereby creating a better political order. Jeremy Bentham
  • 21.  Political Philosophy and Political Therapy  Some questions raise by philosophers: 1. Which is the best form of government? 2. Are there proper limits to freedom? 3. What type of equality should be the basis of public policies – equal rights, equal opportunities, equal results? 4. What should be basis for just treatment of individuals or groups? 5. If the best form is not achievable, what is the most workable or best possible form under particular conditions?
  • 22.  Political Philosophy and Political Therapy  There are conflicting norms among political philosophers like  Plato’s “justice” – minding one’s own business  Marx’s social “justice” – occurs when each person gives freely of his or her different talents for the public good and everyone’s basic needs are equally provided for  Hobbes’ “justice” – the social situation in which state’s sovereign is obeyed absolutely  Which of these conflicting norms concerning justice is true or workable in terms of human needs, talents, and resources?
  • 23.   To Leo Strauss: Human beings will never create a society free of contradictions – perhaps even including contradictory norms  When we read philosophers and their different and conflicting norms, we are invited to reflect upon the norms we hold, or to discuss with others whether we should accommodate, tolerate, integrate, or reject these norms in our own imperfect public life. Political Philosophy and Political Therapy
  • 24.  In Summary Political philosophy has factual (descriptive), diagnostic (causal), and evaluative (prescriptive) dimensions
  • 25.  The major questions Any political thinker is open to the possibility of truth regarding: Wisdom about nature of the cosmos Human nature and its relation to the cosmos The good society The role of politics in human life
  • 26.  The major questions  What is the ultimate reality? Is it spirit of matter?  Is the universe ordered or chaotic?  Does God or gods exist?  Is life random or providentially guided?  Is the universe inclined toward the good and the just, as St. Thomas claims or is it devoid of objective moral purpose, as Nietzsche claims?  Can we know the answers or tentative answers to these questions? If so, how? By empirical evidence? By reason? By faith and divine revelation?
  • 27.  The major questions  Is the universe inclined toward good and the just, as St. Thomas Aquinas claims, or is it devoid of objective moral purpose, as Nietzsche claims?  Can we know the answers or tentative answers to these questions?  If so, how? By empirical evidence? By reason? By faith and divine revelation?
  • 28.  End