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Lecture 4

POLB52 lecture 4 .docx

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Political Science
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Christopher Cochrane

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POLB52 lecture 4  Last week we talked about different critical approaches in society and politics  Movie from the matrix- where the person either chooses the blue pill or red pill the downside of really thinking clearly about politics and society a lot of the things that we take for granted and believe become less and less clear and more and more problematic and we become less and less confident in the things we think – the best term for this is intelligent infusion  Old scheme metaphor-Very rare that beginners kill themselves and very rare that experts kills themselves what’s dangerous is people in between  We you think of politics and society through these different lenses it helps you to become aware of these assumptions of what you make of politics and society for example the idea that some people just magically form groups because they have a common interest and the group serves that common interest this is problematic  When you look at collective action- each individual in the group has an interest succeed they also have an interest of doing nothing to bring forth the groups success  When we start think about why people join groups and pursue things when we try to take into account rational choices argument its becomes unclear to us its not a natural thing  We also looked at physiological explanation are important because we are physiological animals we do have characteristics that all humans share in common and some characteristic that a lot of people seem to share in common with animals its pretty interesting when you see it from a scientific perspective  We also seem to have physiological characteristics on which we differ  There is different things about us and where it comes from us that is entirely unclear  People do have different kinds of physiological pervious positions  We have often use the word personality any political science or social science course for us to sit back and think and realize that we meet somebody their personality might remind of us somebody else – some people are quiet and some people are out going etc  We talked about different ways of studying societies different ways of studying Canadian society and talk about formation of ideologies then apply it to Canada  When we talk about world views or ideologies what exactly do we need?  The word ideologies is used to refer to all kinds of different things- for the most part ideologies is refer to belief systems which in some respects in induavilustic ways of thinking about things  Converse defines the belief system as a configuration of ideas and attitudes which the elements are bound together in a form of constraint  The word system is essential here- a system we would think of a set of interrelated components or a set of interrelated elements  When we think about idea elements we think of different ideas different attitudes people have  Belief is a thought about how the world is and how it works you could think of a value we have thought of how we want the world to be  Attitude – sort of an orientation towards a object external to yourself – attitude to a particular person or a political party  Converse refers to a belief system set of interrelated ideas and attitudes bound together by some form of constraint so one of the key words of notion is constraint – defined in 2 ways  First definition of constraint that converse offers is that success that we would have predicting to give it initial knowledge to a individual holds a specified attitudes that he holds further ideas and attitudes  Example : If you tell me your opinions about gay couples if gay couples should adopt children and I can predict your opinion on gay marriage  These two things are for you connected and are some how constrained I would have some degree of success predicting your opinion on gay marriage on the given knowledge or opinions or ideas – this is one way of successfully predicting one idea in your belief system given knowledge of some of other idea in your belief system – you can see 2 ideas being constrained  Second Definition of constraint- the probability that changes the proceed status so true desirability and so on of one idea element that physiologically requires the point of view the actors and the compensating changes of status of ideal elements elsewhere  This is the idea that we tend to think logically in some extent of the different ideas that we hold  Lets say that man made carbon emissions are causing globall warming you support all kinds of policies that resign to restrict green house gas emissions because you think those policies will help with eliminating green house gases  so your belief that global warming is man made is constrained or connected to your belief that we should adopt policies that restrict the amount co2 emissions in society – if I could prove to you that global warming is not man made through carbon emissions and if you agree then this would physiologically require that you ban or change the basis of your support of government imposed restrictions on c02 - Ideas of belief systems and constraints  beliefs about gay adoption and gay marriage we learn through religion or a belief that we required through people that don’t like gays or lesbians  multiculturalism and immigration tend to fit together whether we should increase welfare spending on one kind of social program or spending welfare spending on other social programs  each of us harbors a belief system- there is common threads or elements that tie belief systems together in varying extents this is why people talk about left and right  people can say they dislike democratic dislike conservatives dislike people with some sort of belief system they like people with the same belief system  it doesn’t mean we agree with people we like on every single issue its just means we tend to agree with them more often then we agree with people at least we perceive as the opposing side  this is the basic definition of ideologies- the set of ideas of beliefs, values and attitudes that each of us hold that some of us might be conscious and that most of us have not yet fully developed so there’s a lot of ideas that will eventually require in your life that you’re not certain about right now ideas will change in the course of your life  when we think about Canadian society one the real fundamental question where do people require the world views that people have ?  basically why do each of us believe of all the crap we actually believe? We all disagree about something’s we all disagree about something’s – there is an old saying when you travel you learn about the place you come from then the place you went  Fundamentally the core values that almost to man and women that hold dear in western liberal countries are actually incredibly rare worldwide  Idea is that we are absolutely committed to and we cannot believe that other people would not agree on so thing like equality in men and women notion of equality in general  Idea that People aren’t fundamentally divided by characteristics that they require at the virtue of their birth so our idea is that these things don’t matter are in fact fundamentally rare worldwide – most people would disagree with those claims  So when we think of ideology as a property of an individual toward belief system – ideology is also used to referred to a property of a group or society- so we can talk about an idea of ideology of Canadian or western ideology or liberal ideology catholic ideology or etc  Idea that there is a view of the group as a whole that we could characterize by listing its properties  Each individual of a group doesn’t share in their own ideology all those of the ideas belong to the ideology group as a whole  Simply not the idea that every single member of the group shares nor simply the accumulation of the ideas of every member in the group believes  If were to talk about a class ideology there is probably a group ideology in this class its most likely not cohesive as class ideology is other places in Canada, united states or other countries given our diversity of backgrounds and religious traditions and so on  If we live in a free society and we can be exposed to any information we want and where each of us is a perfectly free thinker then why is that we always agree with each other on the matter of fundamental principles and why is that we completely agree on things most countries would not agree upon  When we think of ideologies and the stand point of view of an individual and a group as a whole a country in boarder terms civilization  Culture- when referred to as ideology of a group when we think about culture, different societies are characterized by different degrees by specific syndrome by political cultural attitude  These cultural differences are relatively enduring but not in unity –in society there’s cultures that persist through time they change but they change but they change very gradually  Countries have culture – in some countries the culture helps the development of the democracy  learning to lose in a political stand point pretty important in a democracy-you lose the election of which you sort of hoped your aspirations in you have to accept it that’s a property that must exist in democratic society however in some places that does not occur some people will not accept defeat  Also provincial culture 2 questions- to what extent are there in fact different cultures in provinces in Canada?  Why does those differences exist?  40 years ago Canadian culture was defined very differently –not in terms of diversity or multiculturalism that existed then Canadian was seen as more humble quiet reserved Canadians weren’t waving the flag all the time they weren’t drunkly with patriotism  Perfect comparison united states there was a flag everywhere very loud and patriotic Canada moved toward that action were supposed to that 40 years ago cultures have changed  Canadian national culture- Canadian nationalism has been defeated and the society that we were going to create would be indistinguishable from the united states  There is 2 views when we think of world views and social science  The first is how does the individual interact with each to produce the ideology and culture together  The group does not exist without the individual the group itself has an impact on the individuals that constitute  If one of your kids has a terrible mood and they come home it affects you as well as they started screaming at you and their mood but be good but yours might not be because they ticked you off and you pass it off to somebody else its like a diseases gets passed around  There is all kinds of evidence that we pass on many different things to people around us  One argument is our health habits we pass those around to people surrounding us that infect people in our social network- examples smoking , happiness, depression  Problem is that its back and forth people are trapped as it get passed around  Second argument what are the sources that the ideological and cultural disagree?  People do disagreed very profoundly on politics not everyone  What happens to somebody to make think this way ? Were they dropped down a flight of stairs? its applies on both sides  When we think of the answer to these questions Why people disagree? and where is it that people idea
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