Is There "Truth" in Political Science?
How do we know what we know?
Revisiting Huntington and Fukuyama
Big Themes of the Class
1.What is Liberty? Concepts
2.Liberalism & its challenges
3.What explains the relations between states: Theories & Cases
4.Why do some countries become powerful & what is the impact of that?
5.The Rich & the Poor
6.Nationalism, Conflict & Genocide
7.Governance Beyond the State
8.What is liberty? What is freedom? - read Constant - what the Ancients believed
liberty was - collective freedom; for the moderns, freedom is an individual concept - a
rights based order
` if freedom for the moderns is the freedom of the individual, what happens when you
have an entire political order designed that way?
- outlined basics of liberal democracy
- its challenges
9.Communism, Fascism, fundamental problems of the liberal democratic order
Audio recording started: 12:18 PM April-04-11
11.A big chunk of what modern liberal democracy has been for years
12.What explains war & peace between states (as opposed to what occurs in
states) - Cuban missile crises, rise of China, power transition theory...
oDifferent theories of international relations: realism, liberalism,
oWhy is it that states relate to each other the way they do?
oUnder what conditions do you get war or peace
13.Look to big, powerful countries
` Pelopensian War, the Athenians, etc. "The strong take what they can, the weak accept
what they must"
14.The problem of inequality (not within states, but between states); why are
some countries rich & others poor? Why do some stay poor while others become rich?
` question was whether all of the world's poor countries would remain poor
- no longer a question - some countries have become rich
- other questions have risen since: how to become rich? Will the West remain rich, or
will we be overtaken by countries previously poor?