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Lecture

Lecture 1 notes


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POL101Y1
Professor
Jeffrey Kopstein

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POL101 Democracy, Dictatorship, War and Peace 12/6/10 8:23 PM
The End of History? Francis Fukuyama's Hegelian View :
Professor Kopstein
On the Nature of Politics : "...man is by nature a political animal...and he
who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is
sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god..." - Aristotle,
Politics
Big Themes of Class
- Democracy, Dictatorship, War and Peace
Democracy and War
- Francis Fukuyama : Scholar with a PhD in Political Science in the time of
George Bush.
- Summer 1989 - Communism starts to crumble, the Berlin wall falls.
- Hegel: "The Tiger Woods of philosophy". Hegel questioned "What history
was" .
The history of the world is the history of human consciousness.
Ideas and the organization of human society
-Ancient Society
-Medieval Society
-Really big ideas are those that organize human society
-Liberal Democratic State
Hegel and Liberal State
- Hegel and the Battle of Jena against Napoleon : victory of "liberty,
equality and fraternity"
- Big ideas are what drive history
Fukuyama
-Hegel was right but he was a bit off.
-Not 1806 but 1989
- Fascism and Communism as examples of dictatorship failed (Big
challengers to liberal democracy failed).
Challengers
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- Christian, Jewish, Islamic fundamentalism : They are not universal, thus
not a real challenge.
- Communism still exists, but outside of Cuba, North Korea it is not a
challenge.
Clash of Civilizations? An Examination of Huntington's arguments
: Professor Wong
- Samuel Huntington presents a much more skeptical view. He presents a
view where he sees a clash of civilizations.
- 30% of Americans believe that Islam encourages violence in non-Islamic
people.
- Fukuyama - a narrow reading of world history
- Liberal peace and prosperity are illusory
- Inequality
- Contested citizenship
- Exclusion
Who are we? - Samuel P. Huntington
- A book about Mexican immigration into the United States.
- Samuel P. Huntington also questions what it all means.
- Differences = conflict
- Interests = conflict
- Kinship = conflict
Huntington believes that a lot of the conflict is fueled by Western
arrogance.
The West and the Rest
-Fukuyama: The West is the victor
-Huntington: The West in constant conflict with the Rest
- Huntington also fears a Non-Western modernity
- Both Islam and the rise of China confirm Huntington's views of the clash
of civilization.
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